Unicem Rovers Will Bounce Back – Cross River Speaker

In Breaking News, National News, Reports, Sports

By Our Correspondent

The Speaker and his quests from UNICEM Rovers
The Speaker and his quests from UNICEM Rovers

The Speaker of the Cross River State House of Assembly, Hon. John Gaul Lebo has assured the management of the Unicem Rovers football club that the club would bounce back soon.

Hon. Lebo who gave the assurance recently, when the club’s management paid him a courtesy call in his office in Calabar, said that the Assembly was willing to help the club out of its present predicament.

The Speaker while lamenting the plight of Unicem Rovers assured that the House would do everything within its powers to ensure that the club returned to its days of glory when it was the pride of football lovers not only in the state but around the country.

He charged them to remain committed and continue to put in their best as the state government would soon look into the challenges of the club, adding that football was not only a unifying factor but also an avenue for social and economic development which the state government cannot over look.

Speaking earlier, the Chairman of Unicem Rovers Football Club, Mr Maurice Inok who led the delegation frowned at the state government’s attitude to the club which according to him leaves much to be desired.

Mr Inok lamented that paucity of fund was seriously affecting the fortunes of the club and called for the Speaker’s intervention to save the club from drowning.

He expressed dismay that the club which hitherto brought fame to the state was being neglected and starved of funds, observing that this state of disregard was responsible for the club’s poor outings in recent times, as players and supporters welfare were also neglected.

In his remarks, the House Committee Chairman on Sports, Hon. Ogbor Ogbor also expressed dismay that Unicem Rovers was poorly funded, recounting how successful the football club was in the 80s and early 90s.

Hon. Ogbor Ogbor pledged to work with the Assembly to ensure that the club was given due attention with a view to ending the cash drought critically affecting it.

Members on the Club’s delegation included the Vice Chairman Paul Attila Edum, Members Charles Unoh Eko and Akoli Paul Unimke; Team Manager Ijani Okori, President of Supporters Club Archibong Udoh and the Head Coach John Okon Ene.

Others were Ene Asuquo, Media Officer; Echeng Esor, Head coach; Patrick Ekam, Team nurse; Ifeanyi Harcourt, Coach; John Aniah, Assistant Coach as well as Chief Ewa Cobham, who is the Secretary of the Supporters’ Club.

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One commentOn Unicem Rovers Will Bounce Back – Cross River Speaker

  • Dear Editors,
    I am constrained to write you because I just read your report of Unicem Rovers visit to the Speaker of the CRSHA. Your reporter seems not to have understood the issues raised but seemed to be hell bent on portraying Rovers as a Club losing its matches and on a collision course with Government. Why? I don’t know.
    For the record- On the field Rovers is doing very well and is one match away from promotion this weekend if we can find the money to travel for the match in Benin and has been doing well since this management was appointed . The team was relegated by whiskers last season because of lack of funds which was public knowledge. On our visit We were appealing to Mr Speaker for two things, either to ask Unicem to resume sponsoring or to ask Government to intervene as the owners of the Club. We also said that as the first place Soccer was played in Nigeria that the two top Clubs Rovers and Pelican should not be allowed to die. You may also wish to investigate the Pelican pathetic story. We also said that the club Unicem Rovers this season has been sponsored by the Chairman and the Director of Sports and Rt Hon Essien Ayi gave us part money for the registration of the Club this season which shows Management commitment to the team but is an anomaly. We also said Mangement and Players have not been paid since August last year and the Club has no bus or administrative vehicles and is seriously in debt both from the previous management and the present and we have exhausted all avenues of borrowing. We also talked of no feeding for the players or medicalls or proper kitting and also mentioned that the team is almost being thrown out of its Camp by the landlord for non payment of rent. There is a limit to what the Chairman and Director of Sports can do. We have also been dedicating our wins to the sports loving Governor Senator Proffessor Ben Ayade and his Deputywho has even watched one of our matches. Finally we also proffered funding solutions to the problem of the Club and presented written copies of our proposals to Mr Speaker. Remember the Club is still legally registered as Unicem Rovers so we also called on Mr Speaker to please reach out to Unicem to come to our aid and properly sponsor so as to take that load off Government. These I believe we’re the kernel of our visit and not to lambast Government. Please join us and help bring Unicem Rovers back to the Premier league where we truly belong. We will surely invite you to our victory celebrations this weekend when by the Special Grace of God Almighty we will gain promotion back to the Professional Cadre. My office and that of the Media Officer of the Club remain open for clarifications at all times.Thanks and God bless. Maurice Inok Chairman Unicem Rovers FC.

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