- Minimah has 18 days to appeal BIIU suspension
Three days after the suspension of Kenneth Minimah by the Boxing Independent Integrity Unit, interim president of the Nigeria Boxing Federation, Azania Omo-Agege, has equally been handed indefinite suspension by the federation board.
Minimah was suspended by the IBA November 10 for his alleged role in leading the NBF to affiliate with another international boxing organisation, breaching the IBA Constitution, Membership Policy, and Disciplinary and Ethics Code.
The Boxing Independent Integrity Unit’s Tribunal, under the chairmanship of Malek Badri, opened disciplinary proceedings against Minimah November 2, affording the embattled president five days to respond to the allegations.
“The accused party (Minimah) is provisionally suspended from all boxing activities, in any capacity, including official competition official, for the duration of ninety (90) days,” the statement from the IBA read in part.
The statement also gave Minimah 21 days to appeal the decision stating, “The present decision may be appealed in English within twenty-one (21) days after its reception before the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland, which will resolve the dispute definitively in accordance with its procedural rules.”
Following Minimah’s suspension by the IBA Omo-Agege assumed the position of the interim NBF president which operates under the governing of the IBA.
However, in a letter signed by the Secretary General of the Nigeria Boxing Federation, Akinyele Oladapo, Omo-Agege was said to have impersonated as president of NBF and was handed an indefinite suspension.
“This decision was taken at the board meeting held on November 11, 2023 in which you were unable to defend your actions concerning the unauthorized press release and letter to International Boxing Association (IBA) that embarrassed the Nigeria Boxing Federation, Nigeria Olympic Committee, Federal Ministry of Sports and the entire country,” the statement read.
The statement also claimed that Omo-Agege forged and printed the letterhead of the NBF without approval stating, “At no time has Azania Omo-Agege briefed or written any report on the outcome of meetings at AFBC and IBA for the action of the President.
“That you failed to utilise the opportunity provided by the board to reconcile you and the president at the last Zoom meeting.
“That you constituted yourself as one man parallel body against the majority of the board who affirmed the decision to join the World Boxing body as a step in the right direction for the growth of boxing.
“Your claim to IBA that president of Nigeria Boxing Federation Lt. Gen. Kenneth Minimah has ceased to be president according to the constitution is null and void as well as embarrassing.”
The statement requested Omo-Agege to withdraw the letter written to IBA on Nigeria, the suit against the World body, and issue a press release denouncing the earlier release and also write an apology to the President as well as the board within 21 days.
Reacting to the developments, Omo-Agege told The PUNCH that the NBF operates under the IBA so a suspension from a board operating under the World Boxing body is null and void.
“They said they are operating under World Boxing body and the president that called for the meeting where they suspended me has been suspended by the IBA so that cannot work since the NBF operates under IBA.
“I am still the interim president and look forward to working with the IBA to deal with these challenges,” he told The PUNCH.
Efforts by our correspondent to reach Minimah were unsuccessful as calls made to him were unanswered and not returned while text messages sent to him were not replied to as of the time of filing this report.