Otukpo (Benue) – Samuel Abagi, Chairman of the Screening Committee at the ongoing 7th National Schools Sports Festival in Otukpo, Benue, on Monday described as successful the competition’s screening exercise.
“Although the exercise was not without its fair share of the usual complaints by some states whose students were screened out, but it all went well because in school sports we discourage mercenaries,’’ he said.
Abagi who is the Second Vice-President of the Nigeria Schools Sports Federation (NSSF) said the committee had to be meticulous in the screening exercise.
“We did just that to ensure that the federation stages a hitch-free games.
“The NSSF leadership engaged me and some senior members of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Federal Ministry of Education and representatives of national sports federations to undertake this very important task.
“It is a task of ensuring that only eligible students participate.
“Having conducted the screening exercise successfully on all participating athletes to arrive at students under the required age brackets to participate at the games, accreditation has also been done for competition to get underway,’’ he said.
Abagi said the NSSF did not take issues of athletes’ screening lightly in order to curtail age cheating since the essence of its programmes was “catch them young’’.
The NSSF official said the screening took place at the football pitch of Jesus College in Otukpo.(NAN)