More emphasis had, once again, been laid on grassroots sports development in Nasarawa State.
State’s Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Amb. Lucky Isaac Yargwa, emphasized this on Tuesday during the Inter-House Sports Competition of ECWA Comprehensive College in Lafia.
In his opening remarks, the Commissioner said, “From what I have seen here today, I am further convinced and motivated to continue our pursuit for grassroots talent hunt to replace ageing athletes and create world champions.
“I was at Shepherd International College some few weeks ago, and the talents there were fascinating, and today, again, gives me every confidence that we don’t need to go too far to discover budding athletes who can compete for the State and Country at Local, Regional and International Levels. The talents here are smart, intelligent and naturally gifted, and can do anything once the opportunity presents itself.
“I must tell you we have here future Serena Williams, Lionel Messi, Okocha, Kanu Nwankwo, Chioma Ajunwa, Divine Oborodudu, mention them – if only we can properly harness these talents and give them the right environment to explore their hidden potentials.
“We will try our part, as a responsible Government, to see that some of these potentials are well-groomed for medal haul, especially ahead of the forthcoming National Youth Games to be hosted in Kano State later this year.”
The Commissioner, before declaring the event open, thanked the Management and Staff of the school for instilling discipline and creativity among the students while prioritising sports as part of their academic components, adding that it would go a long way in creating in them self-esteem, and a better and more productive society.
Amb. Yargwa, disclosed that the Ministry would support subsequent programmes of the school, when tabled at the right time, as it would help lessen the huge burdens on the Government of the day.
He further stated that the Government is working assiduously to reintroduce the long-forgotten Inter-School Sports Competition to help in talent discovery and nurturing, explaining that not all students would end up as academic success in life, hence the need to provide them with options to choose their career paths.
Speaking earlier, the School’s Proprietor, Reverend Joshua Twan, appreciated the Commissioner for the visit, promising that subsequent programmes would be better, especially in the area of sport infrastructure.
He added that the School would continue to work in synergy with the Ministry and other relevant institutions to usher in the needed change, a position corroborated by the Principal, Mrs. Makanjuola Folake.
At the end of sporting activities which saw the students competing in different sporting events, Blue House emerged overall winners with a total of 142 points. Green House came 2nd with 128.5 points while Yellow House and Red House came 3rd and 4th with 126.5 points and 109.5 points, respectively.