Tokyo 2020 Olympics will not be another jamboree, minister warns federations
Sports Development Minister, Sunday Dare has warned the federations that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games would not be the usual jamboree, where all manner of people are ferried overseas at the government’s expense. Rather, he wants the federations to ensure that only sports and athletes with medal prospects would represent the country in Tokyo.
Speaking when at the Ministerial Advisory Committee where he met presidents of sports federations that will represent Nigeria at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Dare stressed the need for all stakeholders to maintain a common ground for Nigerian athletes to excel at the Olympics.
The meeting, which was held at the Media Centre of the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja, was aimed at preventing a repeat of the last two Olympic Games where Nigeria won only a bronze medal in men’s football.
“It is important we meet and have a time frame. We need to be on the same page to prepare for the Olympics. We are going to create a feedback system beyond this meeting and we are going to have a similar meeting down the road to ensure the smooth running of our Olympics participation.
“This is not going to be a jamboree where we participate for the sake of it. We are going to present only athletes with the best prospects of winning medal.
“We have engaged a scientific approach to monitoring the athletes. We would not compromise standard,” Dare said.
The minister took briefs from the secretary of the Ministerial Advisory Committee, the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC), and the Paralympic Committee of Nigeria.
At the meeting, the lists of already qualified athletes and those yet to qualify were revealed, same with the mandatory sports, which Nigeria is expected to feature in.
Such issues as the budgetary allocation, funding and accreditation processes were also discussed at the meeting.