By Albert Akota
The Icon sports Management has urged the federal government to ban the influx of football importation into the country.
The national coordinator of Icon, Sir Humphrey Ubimago who disclosed this in Abuja at the 3rd edition of Icon sports management conference, said that Nigeria sent huge amount of money to import football into the country that needed urgent ban.
“We urged the federal government to look at banning the importation of football to Nigeria. It might interest you to know that every football you see in Nigeria, at least 90 percent of it are actually imported. So, when we ban importation of football into the country our made in Nigeria football industry will grow. From the research we did, we spent close to N5b dollars yearly importing football.
“When we ban importation of football, we not only develop our made in Nigeria football, we will become an exporter of football to other nations because at the moment there is no football production machinery in Africa.
“We are the only country in Africa that has started it and it is gaining ground. It started in Zaria, we did collaboration with them and they are now in Abuja at the Federal Secretariat where people can go and buy football. Not only that, we also thinking of training youths on how to made football using their hands which also serve as source of revenue to them.
“This is exactly what Kano State government did recently, they trained 500 youths how to produce football with their hands and that will earn revenues to their family, state government and Nigeria at large and we are look at duplicate it at the national level so that in Africa, Nigeria will be the first football production country.
“It has been satisfied by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) which also sent to the Zurich, and FIFA satisfied it. It is now at the hand of National Animal Production Research Institute, zaria. They are the government institutes that are in charge of research and they are promoting it seriously.
“For the past two years our partner Federation Public Services Games (FEPSGA) have been using the Nigeria made football at its annual games without regression, “Ubimago explained