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NUGA: Private Universities decry mercenaries use

As the 24th Nigerian Universities Games kicks off, the use of mercenaries and non-bonafide students by the public universities as athletes has been highlighted as a reason why some private universities will no longer participate in the games. The Director of Sports and Socials, Babcock University, Ilisan, Ogun State, David Ayeni, stated so in an interview with our correspondent in his office. Ayeni said, “Babcock and some other private schools won’t be going to NUGA because we have noticed that the public universities have been using non-bonafide students and mercenaries as students. This act is a slap on our faces as it even does not encourage fair competition and it also does not result in the production of the right athletes for the country.” He added that to stem this, the private schools have started their own games which is called the Nigeria Private Universities Games, NPUGA. “NPUGA began in 2003 and was founded by the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Registrars of Private Universities in Nigeria, otherwise called CVCR. I am the secretary of NPUGA; we formed it to ensure that the country raised the right talents and athletes from among the bonafide students of our private tertiary institutions. “The last edition of NPUGA was held in December, 2013 and was hosted by Joseph Ayo Babalola University.” He however explained that participation in the NUGA Games is at the discretion of the individual universities as there was no compulsion from the body and added that there is no grudge between NUGA and NPUGA. “NUGA and NPUGA aim at discovering talents for the country, so we bear no grudge against each other. Lead City, BIU and JABU are featuring in the NUGA Games, so it is all on the choice of the schools administrators. If they can cope, they are free but some of us are just not comfortable with the cheating being perpetrated by the public schools,” he said

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