Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State has revived sport festival for primary and secondary schools in both the public and private sectors ten years after extinction in the state.
The information was disclosed to Journalists, at the SSG conference hall, government houses Awka, on Thursday, by the Chairman, Anambra State Sports Development Commission, Mr. Patrick Estate Onyedum, during a press conference on the occasion of the opening ceremony of Anambra State School Sports Festival.
Mr. Onyedum, said a total of 610 schools including primary and secondary schools across the 21 local government areas of the state have enrolled to participate in the festival.
According to him, the festival is organized by Anambra State Sports Development Commission in collaboration with the State Ministries of Education and Local Government Affairs respectively.
He said this grassroots development programme is borne out of our desire to take Anambra State back to its days of glory in sports when we produced national champions in different sporting events including the CKC 1977 team that won the World Academicals in Dublin.
“The festival is designed to touch every community. That is why we started the preliminaries at the community level: schools that win at the this stage will compete to emerge as their local government representatives where they will in turn compete at the Senatorial District levels.
“Mr. Governor has released money for just one month after my appointment as Chairman of the Sport Commission. But in line with the solution agenda of the governor, we are determined to make Anambra the number one talent hunt destination for National and International scouts in different sporting events.
“We are confident that at the end of this tournament we would have raised a generation of young athletes that would surprise the country at the National Youth Games scheduled for September this year and by extension at the National Sports Festival scheduled for Ogun State next year.
“Within the eight months life of this management team, Anambra has taken part in a number of national sports competitions including the National Sports Festival in Delta State last year where we won six gold, mind silver and 24 bronze medals and other sports recorded achievements of the commission.
“I am glad to announce to Mr. Governor that performances of our team at these competitions were impressive and that these sports ambassadors are still awaiting for his welcome handshake.
“Meanwhile, we have listed 30 young athletes in different sporting events for monthly training support but for lack resources we have managed to place only six of them on a monthly stipend of N20,000. This money is not a meal ticket: it is tied to performance and is subject to review every year.
“Let me inform Mr. Governor that the sports Commission has entered into agreement with institutions of higher learning in Europe and America which offer scholarships to talented students, the Commission Chairman added.
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