Nigeria Chess veteran Oladapo Adu who represented the country in Chess championship stage in Freetown, Sierra Leone is stranded in Abidjan since COVID-19 pandemic lockdown began in March.
Adu had gone to represent Nigeria in Freetown with three other Nigerians who have since returned to the country, he came second in the Zone 4.2 Individual Chess Championship in March between 14th to 20th.
A competition which seven countries were fully represented, but he (Adu) couldn’t make a return to the country after his flight was cancelled due to the lockdown.
Oladapo in a chat with OwoSports.com from his unplanned based in Abidjan, “I was in Sierra Leone for the Zone 4.2 Individual Chess Championship Freetown March 14th to 22nd the event was rushed and ended on March 20th to enable people head back, unfortunately my flight was cancelled so I hit the road.
“Knowing that nothing else to do I and a Ghanaian and Ivorain who all came for this event embarked on a journey back to our respective countries myself having the most difficult task because my country was the furthest, Along the line during our crossing into Ghana my luggage was missing so all I had with me was my back pack with very few things but majority of my things were in the missing luggage which is still missing till now”
“It took us 3 days to reach Abidjan from Freetown by road along the line the Ivorian stayed back in Liberia while myself and the Ghanaian proceeded to Abidjan and then the border of Cote Dvoire and Ghana.
“Somehow we were able to cross into Ghana border but was sent back by the police and the next day I was sent back to Abidjan while the Ghanaian was allowed to cross Into Ghana this was March 24th 2020 i was disallowed to enter Ghana because of the border closures due to Covid-19.
“Found myself back in Abidjan and been here ever since March 24th, the President of the Nigerian Chess Federation has also been in contact with me, but there really has not been any kind of help to either sustain me here or get me out of here though family and friends have been supporting me ever since.
“The other person who was stuck in Abidjan with me was a Tunisian and he was evacuated from here about a month ago by his country, prior to that they kept him in an hotel for all the period he was here and all his expenses were taken care of”
“I need financial support very urgently and also a plan to leave Abidjan as soon as possible” he pleaded.
The 49-year-old however debunked getting anything from the Nigeria Chess Federation.
“I did not receive money from any authority and if there is such a claim, they (government) should back it up instead of making a false statement. I never got anything from any authority; the only money I got connected to Mary Onyali was a woman here who I guess is a friend with her.”
“I didn’t receive any money from government as stated. An individual gave me CFA100,000, about N64,000. What has that got to do with the government? Government and the sports body are yet to do anything, just vain promises.”