Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) has moved to curb possible existence of drug abuse by players in the league.
NPFL Chairman, Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye said random dope tests would be conducted in the weeks ahead following the acquisition of testing kits from the United Kingdom.
Elegbeleye was in Port Harcourt to lend support to Rivers United in their CAF Confederation Cup qualifier against Etoile Filante, alongside Alhaji Ibrahim Gusau, President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
“We are committed to join the NFF, CAF, FIFA and the global campaign for eradication of illicit substance use in sports and this will commence soon with random tests of our players”, Elegbeleye told NPFL Media after the last gasp win by Rivers United to reach the group stage of the CAF Confederation Cup on Sunday at the Adokie Amiesimaka Stadium.
“We are poised to arrest and stamp out illicit drugs use in the league where it exists and we plan to collaborate with relevant government agencies to launch an enlightenment campaign which will include displays on our MatchDay stadium boards and media channels”, declared the NPFL Chairman.
The NPFL boss was accompanied by the Chief Operating Officer, Davidson Owumi, who disclosed that a memo is going out to the NPFL Clubs with a notice of two weeks for the commencement of the tests.
Owumi disclosed that training on the operation of the kits is ongoing towards the commencement of random tests in another two weeks.
“There’s an ongoing training of personnel on the use of these kits, so players have the next two weeks to detoxify themselves to get rid of any illicit substance in their system as those who fail the tests will be subjected to the full applicable sanctions”, Owumi warned.
He charged medical teams of the clubs to begin sensitising their players on banned substances and how to avoid consumables that contains such substances.