French Embassy de­nies Osewa visa to ITF Euro Tour

Daily Trust - - SPORT - By Orkula Shaagee

@shagcy The dream of Nige­ria’s Micheal Osewa to fea­ture in the 2016 ITF U-14 Euro­pean Tour has hit the wall fol­low­ing the French Embassy’s re­fusal to is­sue him a visa.

Osewa was se­lected for the five-week pro­gramme along­side three oth­ers from Sey­chelles, South Africa and Kenya fol­low­ing his im­pres­sive per­for­mance at the CAT/ITF African Ju­nior Cham­pi­onship in Pre­to­ria, South Africa in March but was stunned as his application was turned down with the embassy claim­ing that his doc­u­ments were forged.

“Af­ter sub­mit­ting all rel­e­vant doc­u­ments and also meet­ing the 15-day time limit, the embassy told us to come for the visa on Fri­day but to our sur­prise, they told us that they can’t is­sue the visa be­cause the doc­u­ments were forged,” Nige­ria Ju­nior ten­nis coach, Mo­hammed Ubale said.

He stated that all their ex­pla­na­tions fell into deaf ears of the embassy of­fi­cials adding that among the let­ters sub­mit­ted with the application are the ones from the French Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion, In­ter­na­tional Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion (ITF), Con­fed­er­a­tion of African Ten­nis (CAT) and Nige­ria Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion (NTF).

“We re­quested that even if they have any sus­pi­cion the right thing to do is to get in touch with the French Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion or the ITF but they say they can’t do any­thing on it again.”

Re­act­ing, NTF pres­i­dent, Engr. Sani Ndanusa re­gret­ted the ac­tion of the embassy say­ing he has been in con­tact with the ITF Head­quar­ters in Lon­don but the embassy won’t shift ground.

“What they are doing to Nige­ria is very un­fair. It’s even more in­sult­ing when they say his doc­u­ments were forged. This is what this same French Embassy did to Em­manuel Idoko in 2012 when he was to go for the pro­gramme, and that was the rea­son we got all the let­ters from the rel­e­vant bod­ies,” he stressed.

The tour would have seen Osewa fea­tured with the best play­ers across the world in tour­na­ments in France, Bel­gium, Hol­land and Ger­many from July 4th Au­gust 7th.

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