Victorious Anambra NSSF team seeks recognition, reward

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Awka, – Anambra and coaches at the seventh Sports Festival (NSSF) on Thursday called on the state for recognition and reward, following excellent performance at the meet.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the festival which hosted by Benue, held Nov. 6 to Nov. 16, 2014.

NAN also reports that Anambra finished second behind Cross River on the medals table after clinching 82 gold, 103 silver and 119 bronze medals.

Some of the who spoke to NAN in separate interviews in Awka, expressed disappointment that the yet to reward them six after the competition.

Emeka Nwafor, a gold medallist in the 69kg category of the wrestling event, appealed to the for recognition and reward.
He said that the put in best during the competition to achieve “a great feat’’.

“We have been expecting them for long now, hasn’t been like this, some of us are already losing hope, but my coach has assured me that something be done.

“This is not the case in previous festivals held in Rivers and Kwara States where athletes were rewarded N50, 000 for a medal and above.

“I went to Rivers and Kwara, the commissioner promised us that government pay us something and they did because I won medals.

“Benue my last competition and I worked hard to win more medals thinking that more reward come, but nobody has talked to us about ,” the athlete said.

Oluchi Nnaneme, a bronze medallist in tennis, said that as a result of the anticipated reward, she had temporarily stopped playing tennis.

Nnaneme, however, appealed to the government to the welfare of athletes.

Benson Udeh, a grassroots coach said that the motivation of athletes was vital to the development sports.

“We have not had so bad and dry, we find hard to convince athletes to compete for us; states are poaching them sumptuous offers, something be done to correct this, ” he said.

Speaking in the same vein, Jonny Igboka, a technical official ,said that there was need to retain athletes the state by offering them good welfare packages.

Igboka noted that he had lost good athletes to states because of poor incentives.

“Any athlete who does well should be rewarded, that is a condition for better performance, I hope they will do something to these athletes now because we will need them later,” he said. (NAN)