The Minister of Youth and Sports Development Mr. Sunday Dare has indicated that the Ministry would collaborate with the Nigerian Sports Award to make the next edition bigger.
He said this in his address at the 8th edition of the Award ceremony which held Friday at Eko Hotels in Lagos.
Congratulating the organizers for their persistence in sustaining this event, he also commended them for motivating Nigerians to remain interested in sports.
“Our gathering here tonight is a testimony to the fact that the Award has come to stay, proof that it is possible for us to get things right in Nigeria. It is reassuring to note that collaboration between the Private and Public sector in 2012 led to the birth of the Nigeria Sports Awards as we know it today.”
“The over 35 million votes cast by enthusiasts in the various categories is a reminder that sports remain the greatest unifier among Nigerians. The votes are further proof that Nigerians can be mobilized to make meaningful contributions to sports development”, the Minister added.
Assuring that the Ministry under his leadership, would play the role of a facilitator to provide an enabling environment for the Sports Industry to thrive, he said the Ministry was working to address the challenges of funding and infrastructure deficit in Nigeria’s sports industry. “We are encouraging the private sector, individuals and others to adopt pitches, centres, athletes and others. Interestingly, this Award is in tandem with the guiding principles for Sports Development in the country, which are the Three “Is” and “1P”, “Infrastructure, Investment, Incentives and Policy”.” He disclosed.
Calling for an expansion the Awards categories to recognize individuals and organizations who contribute to improvement of sports in Nigeria, he said the Ministry, would deepen the collaboration with the organizers to raise the bar for the National Sports Awards.
Among awards recipients at the event was the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth and Sports Development Mr. Olusade Adesola who got awarded in recognition of his contribution to youth and sports development in the country.