LAGOS – Lateef Ibirogba, the Chairman of Media and Publicity Subcommittee of the DAWN Games, on Sunday said that the fiesta would foster good relationships among youths in the South-West States.
Ibirogba stated this in a statement made available to journalists in Lagos.
The sports festival which is for South-West Secondary Schools, tagged Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) Games, is to create a forum for youths in the zone to harness their sporting talents.
The maiden edition of the games was scheduled for May 16 to May 24 in Lagos.
Ibiroba, who is also the Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, said the competition would bring youths in the zone together to compete in a healthy environment.
He added that the games were symbolic because the South-West States want to project to the rest of the country the cordial relationship existing among the people and governments of the region
Meanwhile, the Director of Sports, Ogun State Sports Council, Adesola Faleti, said the state’s athletes are ready and in good form to excel at the competition.
“The athletes have been training for a couple of months. We are going to participate in 12 sports events and in Ogun State, we specialise in more than 33 sports.
“This is just taking 12 out of 33 and it won’t be a problem for us,” Faleti said,
Faleti noted that the games would enable the state to assess its grassroots developmental programmes.
He said that it would also give the state the opportunity to replace its ageing athletes.
“The DAWN Games can bring a positive and better future for the nation as athletes discovered in the regional championship can be selected for the country’s future international outings.
“I believe the DAWN Games is another opportunity to explain the commitment of the South-West State governments towards building Nigeria’s future stars that would take over from ageing national athletes.
“The DAWN Games is the needed grassroots developmental programme which we can use to aid the growth of sports and the wellbeing of our athletes,” he said.
The Games will feature 12 sports, which are athletics, badminton, basketball, chess, football, gymnastics, scrabble, swimming, table tennis, tennis, taekwondo and volleyball, with over 2000 athletes and officials expected to participate.
The events will take place at the Rowe Park Sports Complex, Yaba; the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere and the Agege Stadium, while the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Camp, Iyana-Ipaja is to serve as the Games Village. (NAN)