By Niyi Busari
Former Secretary General of Organisation of Military Sports in Africa (OSMA), Brigadier General Maikano Abdullahi is confident of emerging the winner as the President of the organisation in the 7th October 2020 election.
Maikano made this known on Tuesday at the Armed Forces Headquarters in Abuja while addressing the media adding that his emergence as the president will further develop sports in the Nigeria Armed Forces.
Maikano who had served as the General Secretary of OSMA for four years (2010 to 214) highlighted advantages he has over other three contestants. In his view, out of the other three who hailed from Algeria, Kenya and Guinea only the candidate from Kenya (an English speaking country) will give him tough time because votes from Anglophone countries will be shared among the two. He however stated that his ability to speak French, Arabic and Hausa may be an edge over him.
In his words: “My vast experience in Sports, Fitness and Training coupled with my participation in both National and International Military and Civil Sporting activities enhanced my nomination for this post.
“I am a fellow and member of National Association of Physical and Health Education Recreation Sports and Dance (NAPHER-SD). I have won several National and International Awards in Cameroun, CISM Headquarters Belgium, Burkina Faso, Niger and Republic of Guinea to mention but few.
“As a Senior Officer in Defence Headquarters Abuja and Deputy Director Sports, if given the mandate, I will project the good image of Nigeria better in both CISM and OSMA; promote Military Sports in Nigeria and Africa.
“I will also ensure that our Continent is adequately represented in all CISM sporting events and World General Assemblies and it will also give me the opportunity to promote sports and encourage good sporting relationship among the 51 African Countries.” he explained.
He further stated, though the organisation cut across membership of Anglophone and Francophone countries saying, he understands and communicate both languages including Arabic and Hausa, this he said has made him relate well with both countries to galvanise support for the election.
The OSMA presidential contender also explained that , the CDS has directed the Defence Intelligence Agency to communicate all Nigeria’s Defence Advisers to get in touch with the participating countries to canvass for votes in favour of him to be reciprocated if eventually wins.
Presidential candidate of Organisation of Military Sports in Africa (OSMA), Brigadier General Maikano Abdullahi
He however expressed worry that his tough contender is a contestant from Kenya who is also an English speaking country that might share votes with him within the English speaking member countries of the organisation.
He therefore enumerated some of the achievements done by the Chief of Defence Staff in the area of sports since 2015 to include, regular payment of Membership Annual dues of CISM, OSMA and Walo from 2015 every year to date 2020, renovation of all sporting facilities in Mogadishu Cantonment.
Others are creation of Barracks Male and Female Youth Sports Championship that includes Basketball, Badminton, Handball, Football, Chess and Rugby annually,Participation of Nigerian Armed Forces Teams in international sporting activities such as, World Military Games in Wuhan China in 2019, before COVID, World Military Skills Competition in South Africa 2018 and 2019, among others.
If emerged as the President of OSMA, the President automatically becomes the Vice President of International Military Sports Council also known as Consiel International Du Sport Militarie (CISM)
The CISM which has 136 member countries since 1972 is responsible for organising and coordinating the Military Sports in the world
Bri. Gen. Abdullahi, OSMA presidential Contender.
While the OSMA in the other hand has 51 member countries within the continent was founded in 1994 by Nigerian, Maj. Gen. Ishola Williams (Rtd),became fully operational in 2008 with its Headquarters in Yaounde, Cameroun
Due to the Covid -19 pandemic the general election which holds in October 7, 2020 will be conducted via virtual and zooming conferencing with delegates drawn from all the 51 African member countries of OSMA.
There is no incumbent among the four candidates and that according to him is an advantage for him to emerge president ahead other the contestants.
51 delegates are eligible to cast their vote for any of the four candidates and one with the highest number of votes will announced the president of the Organization.