As preparation to host the 2024 National Sports Festival by Ogun State is in top gear, the State Government has said that it would adopt a Catch-Them-Young approach for budding talents in secondary schools.
Commissioner for Sports Development, Hon. Wasiu Isiaka, hinted while playing host to the Grand Union of Private Schools Associations (GUPSA) at the Conference Room of the Ministry, noted that schools’ annual Inter-House Sports is one of the many ways that serves as a platform to identify talents to represent the State in local, national and international competitions.
He stated that the government is ready to provide the enabling environment for sports to thrive in the State, saying there are plans to resuscitate several secondary school and tertiary institution games, like the Gateway Tertiary Institution Games (GATIG), Governor’s Cup, Principal’s Cup among others.
Isiaka stated that most states in Nigeria do not have the caliber of sporting facilities available in Ogun, charging them to collaborate with his Ministry to not only bring out the best in these budding talents but to also suggest ideas that would help develop sports in the State.
He submitted that while the State is trying to bring out the best potential in these students, their educational careers will be guided by jealousy.
“In each senatorial zone in Ogun State, we have at least one stadium, and for us to utilize and make good use of these facilities, we are ready to partner with anybody that would help add value to our children especially, the society and what will make our State progress. We are ready to partner with you and make those facilities available”, Hon. Isiaka said.
Earlier in her address, the Secretary of the Association, Mrs. Flourish Amoo-Obanla revealed that they have been engaging their students in intra-sports competitions, which had created healthy rivalry amongst them, appealing to the State Government to support them with sporting facilities, while also suggesting a bi-lateral cooperation between the government and GUPSA.