National Sports Festival Holds November 2022

  • Dare: Entrepreneurs are the future of jobs, encourages reality TV show SME finalists.
  • Okowa Calls for holistic approach to Sports development

By Hillary Asemota

The 21st National Sports Festival tagged Delta 2022 is scheduled to take place between November 2 – 15, 2022 following the resolution of the Technical Committee of the National Council of Sports.

The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare disclosed this today in Asaba, the Delta State Capital during the extra-ordinary National Council of Sports Meeting and Inauguration of LOC for hosting of the National Sports Festival.

The Director of Communications in the Ministry in a statement quoted the Minister as saying that the Ministry will continue to collaborate with the Delta State Government with a view to ensuring the successful hosting of the games.

Dare, who commended the President  Muhammadu Buhari-led Administration for the progressive and giant stride ideas deliberately put in place to thrive sports development and the entire ecosystem in the country, where the Medium Term National Development Plan 2021 – 2024 allocated N88 billion to Sports Development  and N60 billion to Youth development  in the next four years, noted that sports development under the purview of the present government has attained a new and impressive height which has invariably secured a seat at the table when it comes to allocation of resources as an area of business.

He added that Ministry in collaboration with the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF), have established a Department in the Ministry that is solely responsible for National Sports Festival and Para-Sports. 

With this development he said, ‘’Para-Sports has been given the desired and long-awaited attention’’.

While citing Sierra Leone as an example, worthy of study, Dare said: ‘’We can learn something from Sierra Leone’s sports system by making all sports federations autonomous and incorporated.”

He stressed the need for the national sports federations to have annual registration from the National Sports Commission which will certify and introduce them to the Nigerian Olympic Committee as the recognized federations.

The Minister commended the Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, and the people of the state for hosting the extra-ordinary Council of Sports Meeting and granting all necessary logistics at the shortest notice.

He urged other state Governors and philanthropists to emulate Okowa, who single handedly adopted the highest number of athletes as a result of his interest in sports development in the country.

While declaring the Council open, the governor described sports as a tool for youth development and national unity as well as socio-economic development of the country.

According to Okowa, ‘’sporting success does not happen by chance, it comes through years of planning, sacrifice, dedication and commitment to excellence, adding that there is still a lot to be done to our sports development as a nation.’’ 

He said that countries that have continually excelled at global stage put in enormous resources to discover talents and therefore treat them as national assets. 

The Governor challenged the stakeholders in the industry on the need to develop a holistic approach to sports development and management in the country.

Okowa also urged the Council to develop policies and action plans to maximize the contribution of sports to national development, adding that sports have the path of building the youth with the values of discipline, team work, fair play, and essential qualities to succeed in life. 

He said that necessary measures should be put in place for the development of a sport industry that can chart a way forward by lifting the nation’s teeming youth from poverty to prosperity so as to earn valuable foreign exchange for the country.

Earlier in his opening remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar implored the organizer and the Host State to draw their timeline of activities for effective and efficient delivery of the upcoming Festival in order to ensure the desired success.

Meanwhile and in another development, the Minister averred in Lagos that entrepreneurs are the future of job creation even as he encourages reality TV show and SME finalists.

According to him, the opportunities offered in the area of entrepreneurship if taken up by the youth will reduce the level of unemployment in the country.

He made this assertion on Sunday in Lagos when he attended the concluding segment of the Next Titan Reality TV show where the most promising entrepreneur went home with a whopping N15 million amongst other business development incentives. 

The Minister during his speech encouraged all participants, stating that sometimes it’s not about being the winner but the experience and knowledge gained while taking part in such a venture.

He expressed his gladness about the crop of entrepreneurs the show has continued to produce and informed the organisers of the Federal Ministry’s continuous and unwavering support.

He urged all young persons to apply for Nigerian Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) when the portal reopens next year as up to 1000 young persons that took part in the Next Titan show this year will soon receive NYIF payments as a boost to the businesses they were bold enough to showcase during the duration of the show.

The Next Titan is an annual reality TV show dedicated to the development of young entrepreneurs in Nigeria.  It highlights the benefits of SME Growth and how investment and collaboration is the centre of individual and national development.

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