The 1 Division Nigeria Army Kaduna Under 18 football competition has kicked off last Monday with 12 teams participating in the week long event.
The competition is being played at the Nigerian Defence Academy Sports Complex and 1 Division Football field, Ribadu Cantonment, Kaduna.
Tidesports source reports that the teams are from the Army, Police, Customs Service, Civil Defence, Correctional Services, FRSC, DSS and communities around the barracks.
Tidesports also reports that the 12 teams participating in the GOC Youth Football Competition include, Junior Police Machine, Dalet FC, 44 Pillars, NAF Bombers, Divine FC, Celtic FC, Correctional FC, Young Shining Stars, Gallant FC, Obaje FC, Junior Defenders FC and DSS FC.
In his opening remarks, the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 1 Division Nigerian Army, Maj.-Gen Faruk Yahaya, said the competition was to enhance cooperation among security agencies and host communities.
Yahaya said it was also to enhance the welfare and development of the members of the families of personnel.
He added that most of the youth in barracks are lacking in critical life skills that will make them employable, such as teamwork, decision-making, and time management.
“You may recall that just recently, we organized skills acquisition training for youth in our barracks and thereafter provided starter packs for 345 of them that underwent the training.
“ Today, I am pleased to once again open up another area of youth development, which is in the area of sports.
“Many of the youths in the barracks are bubbling with energy which should be harnessed for nation building and to win laurels for the nation,” he said.
“I am also aware that the situation in Nigerian Army Barracks could be the same in the barracks of our Sister Services, the Nigeria Police and other Security agencies.
“Hence, in planning for this year’s competition, I specifically directed that youth teams be invited from the NAF Base, the Nigeria Police and the Kaduna State Commands of all the security agencies for this competition.
“Who knows, this competition could throw up the next Kanu Nwankwo, Finidi George, JJ Okocha, Celestine Babayaro, Garba Lawal, Ahmed Musa or a new star never ever seen before.” he said
Earlier the Commander 1Division Garrison, Brig.-Gen Jimmy Akpor said the competition is aimed at fostering civil-military cooperation as well as promoting the spirit of excellence and healthy relationship among the Barracks dwellers and host communities.
Apkor said the overall objective is to channel the energies of the youths towards productive and legitimate engagements.
It would be recalled that in the opening match, Obaje FC and Junior Defenders played a goalless draw.
Organisers Explain 2021 NSF Postponement
The 21st edition of National Sports Festival earlier scheduled for November 2 to 15, 2022, in Asaba, Delta State, will now hold from November 28 to December 10, 2022.
According to a statement by the Festival Secretary, Peter Nelson, and addressed to all Commissioners of Sports and Directors of Sports, the postponement was at the request of the host, Delta State.
“I wish to convey the request of Delta State Government to shift the date of the 21st National Sports Festival earlier scheduled to hold from November 2 to 15, 2022.
“It is now shifted to start on November 28 to December 10, 2022.
“The reason for the postponement is to give Delta State more time to complete some of the facilities needed for the festival,” the statement reads.
It will be recalled that the 20th edition of the National Sports Festival held in Benin City, Edo State, which was tagged: “Edo 2020,” also suffered several postponements until it finally held from April 2 to 14.
Nigeria Must Embrace Grassroots Sports Dev – Amusan
Women’S 100 metres hurdles world record holder, Tobi Amusan, believes that grassroots development programmes and top-notch training will help the country discover more athletics world champions.
Speaking in Lagos at a dinner organised in her honour by The Plug, an entertainment firm, tagged ‘Tobi Amusan’s Homecoming,’ she blamed the exodus of the Nigeria’s top athletes to other countries to what such nations offer the athletes.
“Grassroots sports development is something we lack here and the reason we often lose our top athletes to other countries of the world.
“From my experience training in the United States, if we can have such development here, we can groom young talents and unearth more Tobi Amusans,” she said.
On the recent ratification of her record by World Athletics, Amusan said: “That my world record was ratified by the world body means that I am drug free and that I am clean. I feel great about it. Every time I am on the track, my eyes are always set on how to win and I execute it by winning.”
She also spoke on the recent reception by the Federal Government, saying, “It is great feeling that we were recognised by the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. In as much as we did the work, it was an honour that they took into account and they recognised the fact that we did the nation proud. It is such a great feeling getting the national honour.”
She acknowledged the support she got after her world record feat, with her followers on Twitter rising from 3000 to 150,000 under 24 hours, saying it showed that people appreciate what she is doing.
On the criticism by men’s 400 metres world record holder, Michael Johnson, after her record breaking race in Oregon, U.S, Amusan said she was not bothered. “Honestly, I kept doing my thing because after the World Championships, I had other competitions to attend. I don’t dwell on negativity… I look on the bright side of the sport.”
At the event, Flutterwave, which used the occasion to declare it has signed a multi-year partnership deal with Amusan, said: “It is very difficult to find athletes who embody our core values the way Tobi does.”
YSFON : Academy Coach Begs For Assistance
The Head coach of the De Kings International Football Academy (DKIFA) of Port Harcourt Okpaleke Chika King is begging the Rivers State ministry of Sports, private and corporate individuals and all lovers of football for financial support to assist his team represent the state in Youth Sports Federation Of Nigeria (YSFON) competition.
He said that his team was representing Rivers state at the ongoing Chief of Naval Staff National (YSFON) Competition in Ilorin, Kwara State. He said he had written a letter to the Ministry of Sports and also to some private individuals for assistance.
King made the assertion on Saturday in an exclusive interview with Tidesports in Port Harcourt before leaving for Kwara state.
According to him he had nothing to do than to borrow money for the journey believing that when the State’s Commissioner for Sports sees the letter he would not fail to respond to it.
“ As you can see, my boys are ready for the competition but we lack support.
“ I have written to the Ministry of Sports and also to some private individuals to assist us but I have not gotten any reply, yet.
By: Kiadum Edookor
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