by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF Africa Press Officer
He was returned to office at an election on Thursday 20th December in Adamawa State in the north east of the country; an election that attracted a great deal of attention, a fact reflected in the attendance of Solomon Dalung, the Minister of Youth and Sports.
Notably, only one of the eight positions was not contested; Habu Gummel, the incumbent President of the National Olympic Committee, was returned unopposed.
Intense competition, Olabanji Oladapo, an astute sports administrator, in a straight contest against Babatunde Popoola, the current Secretary-General, gained 22 votes as opposed to 12 secured by his opponent.
“I think my return is a call to serve again and I believe it is going to be challenging having occupied the seat in the past. I am not coming in as a new person but with the intention of exceeding what I have done in the past. It is indeed a clarion call from the stakeholders in Nigerian sports and I hope my experience will come in handy to reverse the fortune of Nigeria at the Olympic Games. For me I am indeed humbled by the huge support I got from delegates at the election; this has put me on another pedestal to raise the bar.” Olabanji Oladapo
Another plus for table tennis was in the acceptance of Ishaku Tikon, the President of the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation, he was elected the third Vice President of the National Olympic Committee. He gained 19 votes as oppose to the 16 votes secured by his rival Dauda Yusuf, the former President of the Nigeria Handball Federation.
Other members elected were Solomon Ogba (First Vice President), Francis Obih (Second Vice President), Muhammed Abdullahi (Deputy Secretary-General), Bappa Aliyu (Treasurer) and Phemmy Adetula (Public Relations Officer).