African Games: Sports Minister Parleys Team Nigeria, Tasks Athletes on Podium Performance

Blessing Oborududu, one of the gold medalists in the female wrestlers
Blessing Oborududu, one of the gold medalists in the female wrestlers

The Minister of Sports Development, Senator John Owan Enoh has tasked Team Nigeria at the on-going African Games in Ghana to come top on the table with more medals in order to make Nigeria proud and also elevate themselves to the next level of their chosen careers.

The minister gave the charge during an interactive session with Team Nigeria Athletes, Coaches, Federation Presidents, and Ministry Officials in Accra, Saturday.

Senator Enoh noted that the parley becomes necessary in order to interact freely with the athletes and address their areas of concern to be able to genuinely address them.

“At the last African Games held in Morocco in 2019 Nigeria came second, we should maintain that position but better if we can rise up to be the first. We must not go beyond the second and to achieve this, we should fully focus on what brought us here and avoid unnecessary distractions” the Minister emphasized.

The Minister disclosed that the Ministry is strategizing to come up with initiatives that will engage all those who win medals during the game to make sure they remain focused enough to be able to move up to the world’s foremost sports competition, ‘the Olympics’.

He encouraged the athletes to avoid temptations that negative energy could bring and make up their minds to come out with medals, train themselves and be the best they could be.

Senator Enoh reiterated the ministry’s commitment to making sure that all athletes and their coaches’ entitlements and allowances are paid to the last kobo. He promised to meet with President Tinubu to request for funds based on all the issues raised to make sure team Nigeria has all the equipment requested for but urged them to bring in medals that will embolden him to speak.

“Give me what will embolden me to speak and I will clarify all issues concerning allowances and whatever, but let us focus on what brought us to Ghana”, he said.

Earlier in her speech, the Chef De Mission and the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Sports Development, Mrs. Tinuke Watti welcomed all the athletes and their managers and encouraged them to put in their best.

In his good will message, the Chairman National Organising Committee (NOC) Alhaji Habu Gumel encouraged Team Nigeria to participate well with all their energy and avoid using drugs as according to him that will only be counter-productive.

He thanked the Minister for all his efforts to making sure Nigeria is well represented in the tournament and wished the team good luck.

Also speaking is the Chairman Athletics, Olumide Oyedeji. He promised that the athletes will put in their best to make sure more medals are won and Nigeria is placed at the top.

All the concerns raised by the athletes were clearly addressed by the Minister. The athletes left the venue fully motivated and well inspired, ready and willing to put in their best and make Nigeria proud.

Kehinde Ajayi (Mrs)
Director Press and Public Relations