8,861 athletes for National Sports Festival – Minister

8,861 athletes for National Sports Festival – Minister
December 05 20:38 2018

By Nasir Kura

Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Mr. Solomon Dalung, said on Wednesday that no fewer than 8,861 athletes from 35 states are to participate in the 19th National Sports Festival scheduled to take place in Abuja from December 6 to December 16, 2018.

Addressing State House correspondents after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja, the minister said only Ebonyi state is not participating in the festival.

He said 8,861 participants comprising 7227 athletes, 710 coaches, 322 team officials and 602 state delegates would be part of the games.

He said athletes would participate in 10 games including basketball, beach volleyball, cricket, football, hockey and para-soccer.

He said the inability of Cross River state to host the event following several postponements led to the take-over by the federal government.

He said the host – Federal Capital Territory (FCT) – has held a roadshow on Tuesday to mobilise Abuja residents to participate at the opening ceremony of the festival.

He said the touch of unity which has gone through all 36 states of the federation would arrive Abuja Thursday morning.

Stressing the importance of the festival, the minister said the National Sports Festival and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) are the key legacies of the country National Unity.