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Nigerian Athletes Challenges World Best Japan In ICE Winter Youth Olympic By Fely Mammah Nwokorie



The Curling Ice Youth Winter Olympic Game is currently going on in Gangeung  in South Korea, Seoul and it will last from the 19th to the 29th of January, 2024.

The Honourable Minister of Sports Development Sen. John Owan Enoh who witnessed the event in South Korea on the 19th of January, said that he is proud of the Nigerian team whose determination and participation in the game for the first time in the history of sports necessitated  the country’s representation in Korea.

While commending the spirit of oneness that he saw in the team, especially their coordination by the Curling President  who single handedly discovered  the sports and athelets, the minister assured them that “The President of Nigeria Sen. Ahmed Bola Tinubu is solidly behind you, loves Sports and ready to support Sports”.

Sen. Enoh emphatically said that he is proud on them for dearing the Europeans in their game of Ice  Curling during Winter and participating in Youth Olympic Game for the first time. Sen. Enoh said that for them to challenges Japanese athletes who happen to be the second best in the world,  speaks  volumes of the fact that Nigeria has enormous talents in sports  that if natured properly, will bring glory to the country and as well, put them on podium performance. 

“They have been the center of attraction in the game” the Hon. Minister said as he observed that other countries attention were on six Nigerian atheletes who were participating with significant zeal among the one hundred and seventeen countries that featured to compete in the Olympic Championship.

He however, assured both the athelets and President of Curling federation of every support that will make their World Body give them the deserved recognition particularly when Nigerian is the only African country to be a member of Curling Winter Ice Federation and also,  as europeans  have seen our countries love for their sports even when Nigeria has no Ice and stronge Winter. 

Further more, the Minister reminded them that “They are treasure and pride of our country, you should continue to make the name of the country vibrate in this tournament”. Senator Enoh encouraged them to be proud of themselves and remain confident despite their no. He further Challenged them to emulate  Kamsi Dike Chukwu who broke a record in 2022 by being the youngest 10 year old player during Curling Ice International Championship. 

Sen. Enoh extended his sports hand of fellowship  to both the Presidents of African Nation Olympic Committee Association (ANOCA) Mr. Mustapha Barack and the President of International Olympic Committee (IOC) Dr. Thomas Bach whom he paid courtesy call. Both Presidents not withstanding,  expressed recognition of the country’s  dedication to excel in all areas of sporting activities.

According to them in their unanimous opinion, Nigeria is fast distinguishing her self in sports related events. They were amazed that amidst other African countries, only Nigeria flag is raised  for mandatory recognition during Ice Curling competitions. They   pledged to synergise  their relation with both the Ministry  and the NOC in areas that would support the growth sports. 

President of the Curling Federation Mr Daniel Damola in his response, disclosed that Nigerian government supported  his growth through  sports thus, his reason for given back to the same government through sports.

Speaking, he stated that Curling originated from Scotland  but domiciled  only in countries with Ice Winter. Mr. Damola further said that he knows that Nigerians excel any where they find themselves  and that he was not discouraged in the discovering of this sports.

The President  still revealed that he gathers his athletes in Nigeria and sponsors them to Germany  Italy,  Finland and Russia for trainings that qualified them to participate for the first time in the on going Youth Winter Olympic Game which is strictly between the ages of 15- 17 years. Nigerian athletes  are participating in the different categories which comprises of Mix-events 2boys and 2 girls, Mix-Double 1boy and 1 girl.

The Honourable Minister John Owan Enoh  attended the event in the full compliment of the President of the Nigerian Olympics Committee Engr. Habu Gumel  and some of his technical staff, President of athletes in the Nigerian Olympic Commission who also doubles as the vice Chairman of Nigerian Olympic Committee  Mr. Olumide Oyedeji, Staff of the Ministry in Grassroot Department  and a Press Officer.

Fely Mammah NwokoriePress Officer22nd January,  2024

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FG to Harness the Digital Economy to Empower Youth



Joel Ajayi

The Honourable Minister of State for Youth Development, Mr Ayodele Olawande has disclosed that the Federal Government is making efforts to harness the potentials of the digital economy in empowering the youth and creating sustainable jobs. 

He made this disclosure in Abuja  when he received the participants of the Senior Executive Course 46, 2024 of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, (NIPSS), Kuru, Jos, Plateau State  who were on study tour to the Ministry. 

Mr Olawande said over 50% of the population below the age of 30 have a significant demographic advantage in the digital age.

“Our youths are tech-savvy, innovative and eager to contribute to the country’s economic growth. However, they face numerous challenges including limited access to quality education, skills training and job opportunities. 

The digital economy offers a unique opportunity for Nigeria to leapfrog traditional development challenges. With the rise of e-commerce, digital payments and remote work”.  “Our youths can assess global markets, skills training and job opportunities like never before,” he added. 

According to the Minister, challenges hindering the growth of the digital economy in Nigeria must be addressed. 
He explained that to overcome the challenges, the Ministry has implemented initiatives such as digital skills training programs for youths, focusing on areas like software development, data analytics and digital marketing especially in the NYSC.

This, he disclosed is alongside partnering with Galaxy Back Bone to improve infrastructure, Internet connectivity and alternative electricity supply as well as funding opportunities such as grants, loans and venture capital for  startups of small businesses with launching of the National Youth Investment Fund.

  The Honourable Minister who hinted that the Ministry’ s goal is to create an ecosystem that supports entrepreneurship and employment opportunities for youth stated: ” We recognise that sustainable job creation is critical to Nigeria ‘s economic growth and stability”   

”I urge you all to join us in this journey to harness the potential of the digital economy for youth empowerment and sustainable job creation in Nigeria.”, he added. 

Mr Olawande further said that the opportunities and challenges underscore the need for a collaborative effort from all stakeholders to harness the potential of the digital economy for sustainable development.

The Minister who observed that there is a gap between the Government and the young people expressed his heartfelt desire for the Youths of the  nation to feel the Government. He opined that the  country has the most intelligent youths in the world. 

Earlier, the leader of the delegation from NIPSS, Barrister Nima Salman Mann, mni said they are in the Ministry to research, proffer solutions, recommendations and strategies to help Government chart its course for the the year, with the theme : ‘Digital Economy, Youth Empowerment and Sustainable Job Creation in Nigeria: Issues, Challenges and Opportunities’.

.She  also added that Ministry of Youth Development is very germane to this year’s theme .” We are with the Ministry of Youth to listen to what you are doing to help the youth, how you are doing it, strategic plans and way forward  as well as how we can use the digital economy to chart the goal for sustainable job creation,” she concluded. 

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