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Ogun plans to reposition sports through state Schools Sports Festival


Lagos – Moroof Afuwape, Ogun State’s Commissioner for Youths and Sports, on Monday in Abeokuta said the state was working towards becoming the factory of sports stars for the country.

The commissioner, in a press statement by the state’s Ministry of Youths and Sports, said the Gov. Ibikunle Amosun-led administration was committed to the development of sports in the state.

Afuwape said, as part of the state government’s effort to bring back the glorious days of sports, was the introduction of the state Schools Sports Festival (OGSSFEST) scheduled for November.

“The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the government and the consultants on the project has been signed.

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“Furthermore, the administration has upgraded the sports infrastructure in the state to first-class status and no state in Nigeria boasts of what we have at our stadiums.

“We also have the technocrats. What remains for us is to bring in the private sector to drive first-class competitions.

“The Principals Cup and OGSSFEST are the pioneering efforts in this regard,” he said.

The commissioner added that the state government believes that success in sports was connected to age.

“Sports super stars needed to be caught and nurtured very young.

“It is of no use discovering a football, tennis or athletics star in his or her late 20s.

“Most sports thrive on the catch-them-young programmes, now that sports is big business. We also see OGSSFEST as a way of fighting crime and unemployment in the land,” he said.

According to the statement, Afuwape urged corporate organisations and philanthropists to embrace OGSSFEST as part of their social responsibilities.

It stated that Afuwape tasked corporate bodies to take advantage of the fact that more than 4,000 kids would participate in the festival to get mileage for their sponsorship.

The statement said the zonal preliminaries of the four-day competition would begin in March, while divisional would hold between May and June.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that eight sports, namely athletics, table tennis, football, handball, basketball, scrabble, chess and volleyball, will feature in the competition’s maiden edition.(NAN)

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