Nigeria Rugby Football Federation (NRFF) has officially been reinstated as full member, following an unanimous vote by World Rugby Council on November 10, 2022 in Auckland, New Zealand.
World Rugby lifts Nigeria’s suspension from international championships
The Nigeria Rugby Football Federation (NRFF) has officially been reinstated as a full member by the World Rugby Council.
In an official letter by World Rugby's Chief International Relations and Participation Officer, David Carigy, he stated that Nigeria Rugby Football Federation has been reinstated. NRFF is to submit progress of activities to World Rugby Council in 2024 and pledged to help the game grow in the country.
Nigeria was suspended from all international Rugby activities following the dissolution of all Federation Boards including Rugby by the Ministry of Sports in April 2021. The suspension stopped Nigeria from featuring in some international engagements including Rugby World Cup 2023 qualifiers, Birmingham Commonwealth Games qualifiers and the just concluded Africa Women's Cup.
Speaking to journalists yesterday, NRFF President, Dr Ademola Are commended World Rugby for giving Nigeria the nod to rejoin the international scene. He pledged that his administration would not relent in making rugby more popular in the country.
“I am happy to see that Nigeria is back to the international scene. On assuming office as the president of (NRFF), I stated that it would not take too long for Nigeria to be back in the international scene.”
The journey has not been easy, However, I thank World Rugby for understanding the need to develop the game in Nigeria by lifting the ban. I also thank the Hon Minister of Youth and Sports, Chief Sunday Dare and NRFF Board Members for their continued support and not to leave out Rugby players and Fans for their patience as well as the media for sticking with us through thick and thin. We say Thank you all.
“We are grateful. This recent development would make the NRFF to redouble its efforts and keep working hard to reposition our national rugby team (The Black Stallions), our female team, Nigerian domestic clubs and grassroots development programmes." Dr Ademola concluded.
Speaking with NRFF General Manager, Mr Azeez Ladipo, ‘’We are working to ensure our national League kicks off in 2023. As you know we have the Northern League and Southern Leagues to keep our players going. Our target is to see that rugby is played in all part of the country, this is why we are focusing on grooming children in Rugby” Ladipo declared.