The Federal Government has inaugurated the Main Organizing Committee (MOC) for the successful hosting of the 21st National Sports Festival, scheduled to take place in November, 2022 in Asaba, the Delta State capital.
Mr. Sunday Dare, the Minister of Youth and Sports Development inaugurated the committee on Tuesday in his office in Abuja.
He stated that the inauguration was a fallout from the Extra-Ordinary National Council of Sports meeting held in Asaba, Delta State last year and the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development and the Delta State Government which signified the commencement of hosting the Sports Festival.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Ismail Abubakar, the Minister acknowledged that the organization of the National Sports Festival is an enormous task that requires commitment and dedication, taking into account that the MOC has barely seven  months to put everything in place for the successful hosting of the games.
Mr. Dare expressed optimism that with the zeal and determination of Delta State Government as well as the calibre of people who constitute the MOC, the task of organizing the festival will not be insurmountable.
He asserted his dismay over the manner, in which our National Sports Festival is fully dependent on the Federal and State Governments for funds, explaining that this year’s festival alone is expected to host not less than 15000 athletes and team officials; outside the technical officials, sports federation personnel and service providers. The trend, he said, is unacceptable and must not be allowed to continue.
The Minister, therefore, appealed to private and corporate organizations to support the development of Sports in the country and leverage on it to promote their goods and services.
“Let me use this medium to appeal to private and corporate organizations to support the development of sports in Nigeria and leverage on it to promote their goods and services.” Dare said.
He also called on the Main Organizing Committee to package the Festival so as to make it attractive to sponsors.
The Minister stated further that with the Main Organizing Committee which comprises very experienced and committed Nigerians such as Alhaji Ismail Abubakar, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development as Chairman and Chief Patrick Ogoegbunam Ukah, the Secretary to Delta State Government as Vice Chairman, the 21st National Sports Festival will be a thing to reckon with.
Responding, the Chairman of the Main Organizing Committee and the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar, represented by the Chief of Staff to the Minister, Alhaji Abba Yola thanked Mr Dare and President Muhammadu Buhari in particular, for the privilege and opportunity granted them to serve the country in this capacity.
He assured that the Committee will bring in their wealth of experience towards the successful hosting of the games.