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Dare Bags NOC’s Outstanding Youth and Sports Minister Award



The Sports and Youth Development Minister Sunday Dare has received an award for his contributions to sports development in Nigeria and the Olympic movement.

The Outstanding Youth and Sports Minister Award was presented to Dare by the Executive Board of the Nigeria Olympic Committee(NOC) led by its President, Engineer Habu Gumel in Abuja on Wednesday. 

Gumel highlighted “the numerous and outstanding achievements as the captain of Nigerian sports and Minister of Youth and Sports Development” to include the emergence of the National Sports Industry Policy(NSIP), Adopt initiative, revamping of the Nigeria Professional Football League(NPFL), payment of monthly stipends to the families of departed sports icons as well as providing financial support to ailing former and active athletes.

According to the NOC President, “another remarkable legacy was the delivery of the Headquarters and Secretariat of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa(ANOCA) by the Federal Government of Nigeria which was commissioned by the President of the International Olympic Committee(IOC), Dr Thomas Bach.”

In his response, the Minister attributed the successes he recorded to the support he received from the sports federations because of their direct dealings with the athletes.

Dare said, “I salute the resilience of the sports federations, their sacrifices and work in developing sports in Nigeria deserve commendation. In spite of all the challenges of funding, they still turn up for international competitions thereby giving the athletes the needed exposure and training required to compete at the elite level and you all know that without these athletes, nothing is possible in sports. There will be no achievements.”

The Sports Minister also identified funding as one of the biggest challenges of sports development in Nigeria, a problem, he believes the newly approved National Sports Industry Policy(NSIP) will alleviate.
“The incentives outlined in the Sports as Business Policy have been approved and will be announced soon. The technical committee has put finishing touches to the document and it will become fully operational soon.

“This will drive private sector support for sports and there will be a massive turn around as the funding issues will be confronted headlong.

‘In the last four years, Sports moved from being a third tier ministry to being a first tier one. Apart from this, under the Federal Government’s National Development Plan(NDP), sports will receive N80 billion for the next four years. A plan is in place to make sure a percentage of this fund goes directly to the sports federations.

“Just a few weeks back, the Federal Government approved N2.4 billon for a High Performance Centre to be established inside the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja and before then, there is the Anti Doping Centre to be established in Nsukka, Enugu State.”

He commended the Nigeria Olympic Committee(NOC) for offering scholarships to many Nigerian athletes, ensuring they combine their participation in sports with education.

Speaking earlier at the event, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar thanked the Minister for his wonderful performance in office, wishing him well in his future endeavours while calling for stronger cooperation with the Olympic family.

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NYG 2023: FG Charges Participants to compete Fairly In Spirit of Unity



As the 2023 National Youth Games kicks off, the Federal Government has called on participants in the country to ensure they compete fairly in the spirit of Unity of the nation.

The President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu gave the charge today when he declared open the 7th edition of the National Youth Games holding in Asaba, the Delta State Capital. 

The President stated that the aim of the games which was conceived in 2013 was to reposition sports at the grassroots level and to facilitate the discovery of budding talents in the country.

Represented by the Honourable Minister of Sports Development, Senator John Owan Enoh,  the President stated further that National Youth Games serves as an effective platform for talent identification and development as well as a level playing ground for young athletes to achieve excellence in sports and not necessarily to compete for the purpose of winning medals alone.

He explained that the Games was designed not only to enhance and elevate sports globally and regionally,  but also to establish a standard for athletes’ succession from one generation to another and enable for athletes participation in their community development as well as reinvigorate national unity and  collaboration amongst them.

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu informed that his administration is committed to the development of sports in the country and that was why he specifically created the Ministry of Sports Development and assigned a colossus administrator,  Senator John Owan Enoh to drive its affairs, in line with the policy thrust of government.

The aim he added, is to ensure that sports move from mere recreation to job creation, thereby providing opportunities for poverty reduction amongst our youth, both male and female through government’s agenda of inclusiveness thus, improving on the security of our dear nation.

The President who congratulated Delta State Government for hosting the games urged officials and athletes to compete with the spirit of fairness and togetherness, while putting the interest of the nation ahead.

He wished the athletes a fruitful competition.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Executive Governor of Delta State Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori stated that since inception, the National Youth Games  has proven to be a cost effective and reliable tool to promote national unity, advance development and  peace at both national and sub-national levels.

He observed that if this is effectively harnessed, sports has the power to positively impact on the economic and social wellbeing of any society.

Sports, he noted, *plays a great role in the realization of development and peace, in its promotion of tolerance and respect, and the contributions it makes to the empowerment of women and of young people, individuals and communities, not to mention its health, education and social inclusiveness objectives.

The Governor noted further that the belief of the Deltans on these ideals was unshakeable and that is why he.said,*the Government of Delta State has continued to make its resources available to host national and international sporting competitions

In 2018, he added, the state hosted the African Senior Athletics Championship, and in November 2022, the 21st National Sports Festival. 

Gov. Oborevwori reiterated that the Stephen Keshi Stadium has become a venue of choice for hosting national football championships, as Delta is becoming the beehive of sports in Nigeria.

He assured all participants of a peaceful and exciting games as security personnel, protocol officers, traffic management teams, and volunteers are on ground to ensure a peaceful, safe and secure environment for free and fair competition.

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