THE House of Representatives aspirant for the Alimosho Federal Constituency in the last election under the political platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ambassador Kaokab Ibraheem Aroworatira, has called on Government across levels to mobilise support for grassroots sports, noting that it will ensure the renewal of sports development across all levels.
While speaking with the press on Thursday, February 8, 2024, Kaokab said: "2024 is turning out to be a success for the country in Sports.
“Just on Wednesday, our gallant Super Eagles defeated the Bafana Bafana of South Africa at the ongoing Total Energies African Cup of Nations, AFCON, in Ivory Coast. Weeks ago, we saw how our athletes in tennis, baseball, basketball and all other sports represent us well.
“They were honoured for their extraordinary feat and display of talent in their chosen sports at the African and international arena. This is a great moment for sports in Nigeria, and the Government across levels needs to mobilise for grassroots sports."
He added that the momentum from these recent achievements must be built upon, noting that grassroots sports development is the way to ensure this.
Ambassador Kaokab also noted that sports is an important vehicle for nation-building, which is why Governments across levels must give greater attention to sports development.
“In National competitions, it mirrors our pride, emotion, unity and discipline. Aside from these obvious benefits that sporting glory brings, it is also a major tool for youth development,” he noted.
He, therefore, charged elected and appointed political office holders, most especially in Alimosho Federal Constituency, Lagos and Nigeria, to pledge their administrative and legislative commitment to youth-oriented sports development.
“Grassroots sports programmes need to be launched across all our Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas to provide young residents of Alimosho, Lagos and Nigeria under the age of 17 years with structured programmes that combine sports and play as critical learning and development tools. This initiative will revolutionise grassroots sports in our dear federal constituency, State and nation,” he explained.
On the problems facing sports development in Nigeria, he said, "Our political office holders across levels are not unaware of the fundamental constraints facing this initiative, such as inadequate sporting facilities and qualified coaches in the majority of our educational institutions; nevertheless, they need to be determined to reverse this situation. By so doing, we will overcome existing constraints by articulating cost-efficient solutions to empower children and facilitate greater interest and participation in sports.”
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Chieftain then called on Local, State, and Federal Governments with other stakeholders in the private sectors to support grassroots sports in their various jurisdictions, saying, “Partnering and channelling their supports in developing sports facilities in rural and urban areas, we are certain to significantly spur the growth and development of grassroots sports.”