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Iyaye explains why Rivers will win 20th National Sports Festival


Athletes set for Edo 2020 National Sports Festival. PHOTO: FEMI ADEBESIN-KUTI<br />

Rivers State Commissioner for Sports, Boma Iyaye, has explained why he thinks the winner of the 17th National Sports Festival will repeat the feat at the Edo 2020 edition of the festival, which begins next week in Benin City.

Rivers State, which is one of the top three sports states in Nigeria, is prepared to dust all comers to the 20th edition of the games in Benin, Iyaye said during a media conference in Port Harcourt on Thursday ahead of the state contingent’s departure for Benin. 

He disclosed that Rivers State would participate in 29 events at the festival, adding that they would all produce medalists.  Iyaye praised Governor Nyesom Wike for his ‘unprecedented support which shows that he truly understands the role sports can play in the unity of the state, youth empowerment, wealth creation and tackling youth restiveness,’ adding that the state’s athletes have been provided with the best of facilities and welfare, hence their satisfaction with the preparations so far.


He disclosed that in order to ensure the best of atmosphere for the athletes, they would travel to Benin with the full compliments of all logistics that include ambulance, medical personnel, among others. 

Iyaye added that as a state that takes the issue of COVID-19 seriously, all the officials and athletes in the state’s contingent have so far been vaccinated, while PCR testing as required by the festival organisers has been concluded. 

“We are going to the Sports Festival to compete and win fairly against other states. We are sure that our athletes will come out tops… we will be among the best, that is our charge. 

“It is not possible for us to participate in all the events, so we have chosen the ones we are sure of winning medals. The team spirit is very high, motivation is tops and we have done well to provide all they need.

“We remain highly elated and appreciative of the gesture of Governor Wike in providing funds and support. He has proven to be truly the Power of Sports in Africa,” he summed up.


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