Sports, Veritable Tool For Unity, Dev -Wike

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Kelechi Nwakali (middle), complaining to a referee in one of the games he played.

The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has described sports as a veritable tool for unity, cooperation and socio-economic development.
Governor Wike stated this during the opening ceremony of the All Africa Senior Badminton Championships at the Alfred Diete-Spiff Civic Centre in Port Harcourt, last Monday.
Represented by his Deputy Dr (Mrs) Ipalibo Harry Banigo, Governor Wike expressed delight to host Africa 19 years after the last time Nigeria hosted the Championships in Bauchi in the year 2000.
The Governor urged participants to be proud of their heritage as Africans, use the opportunity to bond in brotherhood, change the negative narrative about Africa, showcase their talents in order to attract the rest of the world to Africa for the right reasons.
“I would like you to use this opportunity to know yourselves and develop brotherhood, sisterhood and continue to make this great continent of ours the continent that everybody will desire to come to, it will no longer be the continent that negative things are spoken about, it will be a continent that can showcase great talents like your selves and showcase a lot of things that will attract the whole world to want to be with us”. he stressed.
In his goodwill message the State Commissioner for Sports, Boma Iyaye said within the past four years the Governor Wike-led administration hosted several national and international sporting events which includes the All Africa Senior Badminton Championships as well as the African Wrestling Championships amongst others.
According to him, Sports had played a major role in our society, such as the provision of jobs and career prospects for our teaming youths as well as the curbing of criminality in our society.
In his welcome address, the President of the Badminton Federation of Nigeria, Francis Orbih said the Rivers State Model for Sports Development is a worthy example other States in Nigeria refer to in their Sports Development Plan and thanked the President of the Badminton Confederation Africa for making it possible for the country to host the championship.
The President of the Badminton Confederation Africa, Mr Tukabana Bau had earlier said the Badminton Confederation Africa is committed to the welfare of badminton players in Africa, noting that also makes sure that the best countries hosts its major events and thanked Governor Wike for making the hosting of the 2019 All Africa Senior Badminton Championships a reality.