Delta to ban schools without sporting facilities
• Mastercare wins Zenith Bank Principals Cup
Henceforth any school in Delta State without sporting facilities will no longer be approved to function, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has declared.
Speaking in Oleh, Isoko North local council at the weekend during the finals of Delta State’s Principal’s Cup sponsored by Zenith Bank, Okowa expressed his administration’s desire to constantly maintain its leading role in Nigerian sports.
Positing that future champions are usually caught young at the primary and secondary schools levels, he added, “I believe we will continue in this stead so that the energy of our youths will be used for gainful ventures.
“Any school that is applying as a new secondary school must have sports facilities, without that there will be no registration. We have seen some schools tucked into a little space without consideration for sports facilities.”
Some of the biggest names in the country’s football were present at the event. They include the President of Nigerian Football Federation (NFF), Mr. Amaju Pinnick, former Super Eagles’ captain, Henry Nwosu, Victor Ikpeba, who led others like Victor Agali, Edema Fuludu, Ndubuisi Okosieme and Ifeanyi Udeze to the event.
At the end of the competition, Master Care International School, Asaba defeated Idjerhe Grammar School 2-1 to win in the tournament sponsored by Zenith Bank Plc, while Ogbe-Ijoh Grammar School took the third place in the tournament which had schools in all the 25 local councils of the state participating.
The governor expressed joy at the excitement that trailed “the edition of the Principals’ Cup in the state coming after several years. The quality of football we witnessed this afternoon is something we will talk about for a long time to come.
“We are looking forward to the school sports competitions like we used to have in General Ogbemudia’s administration in the old Bendel State and I want to urge our Principals to take it as a must to annually organise its sports competitions and our local government chairmen must pay attention to sports development.”
He reiterated that his administration would continue to develop sports facilities, adding, “We will look at how to organise sporting competitions at primary school levels. Our dominance in sporting events will remain for a long time to come because we will always discover talents through these events.”
Okowa pleaded with parents to allow their children the freedom to participate in sporting events because “they don’t know what their children will be in the future.”
Also speaking at the event, Mr. Lucky Bade, who stood in for the Chief Executive Officer of Zenith Bank Plc, Mr. Peter Amangbo, congratulated winners and assured that the bank will sponsor the event annually.
In his remarks, Delta Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Mr. Chiedu Ebie said the benefits of encouraging the youths to be involved in sporting events were enormous.