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Buhari receives Edo sports festival ‘torch of unity’

Buhari receives Edo sports festival ‘torch of unity’

• Urges athletes to be good ambassadors at Tokyo Olympics

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday in Abuja called on private sector investors to collaborate with the government towards youth and sports development in the country.

The President spoke at the Presidential villa where he received the ‘Torch of Unity’ to signify the official flag-off of its movement across Nigeria, to herald the National Sports Festival scheduled to hold in Benin City, the Edo State capital, in March this year.

President Buhari reiterated his administration’s commitment to continue to support and provide the enabling environment for the development of sports at all levels.

‘’I am pleased to receive the National Sports Festival ‘Torch of Unity’’. It is a symbolic representation of the Unity, Peace and Solidarity amongst Nigerians, especially the athletes and officials in the 36 States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

“Since the inception of the National Sports Festival in 1973, the Games have been a useful avenue for interaction, integration for our youth, sportsmen and women and a platform for states to showcase their best in sports.

“It is for this reason that the Federal Government intervened to host the last edition of the Festival in the FCT in order to salvage the sports fiesta from permanent closure.

“I wish to commend the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development and the Federal Capital Territory for hosting the event in 2018,’’ he said.

On sports development in the country, the President applauded the Ministry for initiating the Adopt an Athlete or Stadium Campaign, noting that it is one of the useful ways to create opportunities for participation by firms and individuals.

He, therefore, invited sports lovers and enthusiasts to take advantage of the Adoption Campaign to be part of raising the banner of sports in Nigeria.

On the 2020 Olympics and Paralympic in Tokyo, Japan, scheduled for July 24 – August 9 and August 25 – September 6, 2020, respectively, the President used the occasion to wish the country’s athletes the best of luck at the games, urging them to be good ambassadors.

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