The Tanzania atheletics team pulled out the ongoing African Senior Athletics Championships currently happening in Asaba, Delta State due to what it called ‘poor organisation and security concerns’.
Tanzania was expected to send five athletes to the biennual championships billed to hold at the Stephen Keshi International Staduim, Asaba. But officials said they were dissatisfied with the poor travelling plans for the event, as well as the threat of insecurity from extremist groups in the region.
“The organisers of the African championship acted too late in sending the invitation letters, and they also failed to assure us that we would get visas on arrival in Nigeria,” Athletics Tanzania secretary Wilhelm Gidabuday said.
“We are also concerned about the safety since the Niger Delta region where the event is being held has been put on security alert due to the danger of attacks by the Boko Haram extremist groups.” Mr Gidabuday continued.
More than 300 athletes from 20 countries were stranded for two days at the Muritala Muhammed Airportm Lagos, without flight connections to Asaba.
Kenya, represented by 60 athletes, also saw their travel plans affected with pictures shown of athletes and officials sleeping rough at the Lagos airport.
The competition has since gotten underway after a colourful opening ceremony yesterday August 1.