FCT picks 50 athletes for Ilorin 2016 National Youth Games
The Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, will field 50 athletes at the National Youth Games scheduled to begin in Ilorin, Kwara State, this weekend.
The athletes and their officials, who have been in camp since last week, are expected to leave Abuja today for Ilorin.
According to FCT officials, the athletes would take part in nine events, including athletics, cricket, table tennis, karate, badminton, wrestling, taekwondo, tennis and chess. Cricket is the only team sport in the contingent.
A statement from the FCT revealed that only 12 sports were approved by the ministry of sports for the games.
According to the FCT’s Director of Sports, Mrs. Dilichukwu Onyedinma, efforts are on to ensure that the territory is not left out in the rejuvenated Federal Government’s grassroots sports development plan.
She disclosed that despite the economic challenges, the FCT Minister, Alhaji Mohammed Musa Bello, made the participation of FCT athletes a priority to boost youth empowerment through sports.
According to her: “We are taking this competition very serious because it will serve as a grooming ground and experience center for our athletes, some of who could take part in the National Sports Festival later in the year.
“The aim of this administration is to give youths the needed attention, using sports as vital tool to empower them. Because when these teeming Youths are engaged, crime will naturally reduce in the society.
And so, the competition is not necessarily where we expect our athletes to just win but to serve as development programme for them.”
About 2,600 athletes and 400 officials are expected to converge on the University of Ilorin for the 2016 National Youth Games.
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