At Imo sports summit, dare wants mini stadium built across federation
The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has commended Governor Emeka Ihedioha of Imo State for directing all the 27 local councils Interim Management Committee to construct stadium each for sports growth at the grassroots level, saying that he would canvass a replication of it to be done in all the states of the federation.
Dare, who stated this at the opening ceremony of a three-day Imo Sports summit at Imo Concorde Hotel, Owerri, said: “I would be canvassing the model in all the other states of the federation, as a strategy for developing sports at the grassroots.”
The Sports minister, who lauded Ihedioha for the initiative, while calling for its sustenance, expressed misgiving in the the immediate past administration of the state, which left facilities at the Dan Anyiam Stadium to rot and dilapidation, stated that his facility tour of the ongoing rehabilitation of the stadium, indicated so.
“Imo would change to ‘Imo: Home of Sports’…First, let me thank the Imo State Sports Commission led by Chief Fan Ndubuoke for putting together this wonderful two day sports summit. Second, this administration recognises the importance of sports as a veritable platform to develop our dear state.
“Sports is now a dollar-spinning venture that cannot be ignored. To this end, this government has commenced the construction of Dan Anyiam Stadium, which was abandoned for eight years. The turf is re-grassed. The tartan tracks rebuilt. The terraces replaced with modern ones even as both the electronic score board and the floodlights are being replaced. Equally, the Grasshoppers International Handball Stadium is under reconstruction,” he said. He noted: “I must not fail to inform you that we are also organising Imo State Sports Festival in December. After that, we shall be moving to bring back all Imo born athletes, who left the state for other states in the wake over eight years abandonment.
“This commendable project is called back to roots. Also, we have put in place a bidding committee to facilitate for us the hosting of the 21 edition of the National Sports Festival. Of course, we are constructing 27 new stadiums across the 27 LGAs in the state. This is because we believe that sports is best practised when you have the facilities and being able to catch them young. I thank all our guests and sports personalities. Our goal is to make Imo State better through sports”.
The sports commission chairman, Ndubuoke thanked all guests, paper presenters and participants for attending the event and reminded them of November 28, 2019, second day event. The high point of the event was the swearing in of the bidding committee headed by Dan Ngerem.In his speech, Governor Ihedioha said the aim of his administration was to bring back the Imo State talented sports men and women, who left the shores in anger to the state.Ihedioha declared the summit open, while inaugurating a 33-man committee to bid for the 21st National Sports Festival.
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