The Commissioner for Information, Youth and Sports Development in Ekiti State, Mr Lanre Ogunsuyi yesterday assured youths that all outdated sports facilities in the state would be upgraded in 2018.
Ogunsuyi gave the assurance in an interview with newsmen in Ado-Ekiti.
According to him, some of the training equipment in the state’s stadia are outdated but the state government will try as much as possible to upgrade them.
He added that inadequate funds had affected and hindered the government from refurbishing and repairing some of the sports facilities.
The commissioner explained that the available funds were used to pay civil servants outstanding salaries and pensions.
Ogunsuyi said that the football pitches in Ikere, Ijero and Ikole Township Stadia would be repaired and put into good shape to be available for sports activities.
The commissioner noted that the proposal on how the sports facilities in the state would be upgraded had been included in the 2018 budget.
“ I want to assure youths in Ekiti that we are working towards upgrading all our sports facilities in the state without any further delay.
“My ministry and sports council management have written a proposal which have been included in the 2018 budget; we are only waiting for the approval of the budget.
“We have started planting grasses on the football fields in Ikole, Ikere and Ijero stadia and a maintenance team have been set up to keep the arena in good shape,” he said.
Ogunsuyi appealed to notable sponsors, individuals and organisations in Ekiti to assist and join the state government in reviving and improving grassroots sports in 2018.
He noted that some individuals and associations and traditional institutions had shown interest to partner with the state government in sponsoring football competitions.
Ogunsuyi urged others to emulate these good intentions and encourage the youths to embrace sports.
The commissioner, however, warned all the youths to shun cultism because it is a punishable and a grievous offence for anybody caught in the act under the newly passed law of Ekiti state.
He said that, henceforth, the state government would not tolerate any forms of killings, rioting, violence and harassment in the state university and other state owned colleges.
Infantino Reveals How Nigeria Can Host FIFA Competitions
FIFA President, Gianni Infantino last Thursday, in Abuja, revealed how Nigeria can be made a destination for top Grade A football matches and FIFA competitions.
Infantino gave the insight when the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare took him on a tour of the renovated main bowl of the MoshoodAbiola National Stadium.
The FIFA boss, who was visibly happy with the re-grassed pitch at the stadium, said well-maintained stadia with good pitches were key to hosting grade A matches.
He said FIFA was ready to work more closely with Nigeria to develop the game and host more grade A matches in the country.
“We (FIFA) have to make sure when a country, when a government with the President, the minister and private persons are investing in football, in stadia, we work with them to give something back.
“It’s obvious that stadiums like this (MoshoodAbiola stadium) and others in Nigeria deserve the best quality games.
“They deserve top national team games, top club games and it’s not just about Nigerian football or African football, it’s about global football.
“We are working together to see what kind of new opportunities, competitions we can bring for men and women to fill this stadium and make the heart of the stadium beat for the fantastic spectacle that all of the Nigerian love, which is football,” he said.
Earlier, the minister said the Federal Government will continue to invest in sports development and facilities.
Tidesports source reports that the FIFA President, in the company of the minister, had earlier visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Statehouse, as part of his engagement.
Why NFF Must Offset Rohr’s Salaries, Bonuses – Aikhomogbe
Former Nigerian goal keeper, Andrew Aikhomogbe has called on the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to resolve every outstanding salaries and bonuses owed to the Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr before the next World Cup qualifiers against Central Africa Republic (CAR).
Aikhomogbe made this known on the backdrop of the football body’s recent deal with Baba Ijebu.
Although the financial details of the deal was not disclosed, Aikhomogbe in an interview with Newsmen from his base in Cairo, Egypt, stated that the NFF should use this platform to offset Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“It’s a big delight to know that the Nigeria Football Federation have signed a deal with Baba Ijebu and this will serve as an opportunity for them to use part of the money to pay Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“There is no better time to motivate him than now before Nigeria’s next 2022 World Cup qualifiers against the Central Africa Republic (CAR) on October,” he said.
Enyimba Players Vow To Support Finidi
Enyimba FC Goalkeeper, John Noble has stated that the players of the People’s Elephants will be key to the success of the newly appointed coach of the team, Finidi George.
Finidi, signed a two-year deal with Enyimba and oversaw his first full training session with the team on Thursday after a cameo appearance on Wednesday.
Speaking in a chat with Tidesports source, Noble gave his assessment of the coach in his first session under the manager and believes the former Super Eagles winger has what it takes to lead the team to the next level.
He added that the Enyimba players will be the ones to hand Finidi George his success at the club.
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