The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has said that the importance of grassroots sports development cannot be over- emphasised.
He said this while speaking to newsmen at the grand finale of the Kwara State Sports Festival on Saturday.
He added that the resuscitation of the sports event was “a step in the right direction:” This is where we want to be when it comes to sports development and by that, I mean the promotion of grassroots sports development. We want to see the commitment of state governors to grassroots sports development.
“Fifteen years after the last sports festival was held, we are having this, so there is a renaissance taking place and I am always very glad when I see the youth involved in sporting activities.
“We are looking for young talents that we can nurture in athletics, weight lifting, boxing and I am really glad to be here.”
The minister assured of the readiness of team Nigeria in athletics for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics: “What happened on Friday with Tobi Amusan, who is now globally seeded number two by IAAF which signposts the future of Nigerian athletics.
“We have the Tobi Amusan, Ese Brume, Blessing Okagbare, Divine Oduduru. This country has one of the best relay teams about the third or the fourth in the world, we were second before and we are trying to re-enact where we were before when it comes to relay. So athletics wise, we are ready for the Olympics.”
The Kwara State Sports Festival was held at the Kwara Sports complex with the minister as special guest.
Governor Abdulrazaq Abdulrahman resuscitated the event 15 years after the last festival was held.
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
Nation4 days ago
Trafficking: NAPTIP Holds Peer Review For Member States
Rivers4 days ago
NGO Seeks Media Collaboration On Climate Change
News23 hours ago
UNGA77: PH Refinery To Produce 60,000bpd Soon, FG Boasts
Education23 hours ago
Association Urges Inclusion Of Sign Language In Nigeria’s Education Curriculum
News4 days ago
Troops Ambush Boko Haram Terrorists, Kill 7
Nation1 day ago
South-West Govs Fault FG’s Refusal To Arm Amotekun
News23 hours ago
RSG Charges Unity Road Contractor To Speed Up Work
Oil & Energy23 hours ago
Eni Decries Production Loss From Bayelsa Gas Pipeline Explosion