President Buhari Charges Athletes To Be Worthy Ambassadors of Nigeria

President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, has charged all athletes and team
officials representing Nigeria at the 12th African Games in Morocco to
be worthy Ambassadors both on the field of play and outside the
sporting arena, admonishing them to be conscious of the global
community and desist from actions that would projects the image of the
country negatively.

2. He added, ‘’as you all know, the menace of drug use (doping)
in sports is threatening the core foundation of sports and has led to
embarrassing situations, as well as sanctions to some great sporting
nations. I therefore urge you to keep the integrity of our nation
intact by competing clean and fair at the African Games’’.

3. President Buhari, GCFR, commended the 308 athletes
participating in 22 sporting activities for their level of discipline
during training towards the Games, assuring them that the Federal
Government is fully committed to their successful participation in the
African Olympic Games. He added that the team and their handlers have
the support of over 180 million sporting-loving Nigerians as they do
the nation proud.

4. The President, who was represented at the occasion by the
Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha
stated this during the official handing over ceremony/farewell of Team
Nigeria’s contingent to the 12th African Games, Rabat 2019, to the
Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) at the VIP Lounge of MKO Abiola
National Stadium recently in Abuja.

5. Earlier in his welcome remarks, the Permanent Secretary,
Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Olusade Adesola,
expressed sincere gratitude of the athletes and millions of Nigerian
youth to President Buhari’s led government for given stanch support to
team Nigeria, promoting greater inclusion of the youth and to invest
in the people.

6. Adesola stated that the Federal Government has meticulously
prepared the athletes for the Games, even as the contingents are
formally handed over to the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) in line
with International Olympic Committee’s best practises. He urged the
athletes and coaches to upholds the statement that ’many are called
but few are chosen’ by joining the club of legends who have brought
honour to their fatherland.

7. In his acceptance speech, the President of the Nigeria
Olympic Committee, Engr. Habu Gumel, on behalf of the Ministry as well
as various National Federations, appreciated the collaboration and
commitment of Government to the preparation and participation of the
contingent to the continental games, adding that this is the first
time in history that the African Games will act as Olympic
Qualification Event in 17 Sports, for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

8. Gumel expressed confidence that Nigerian athletes have
always proved their brilliant performance at previous games which had
garnered a whopping total of 448 Gold, 417 Silver and 389 Bronze
medals since the commencement of the Games in 1967, stressing that the
2019 edition will not be an exception.

9. The 12th African Games is scheduled for Rabat, Morocco from
August 19th to 31st, 2019 and Nigeria is participating in 22 sporting
activities namely: Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Beach Volleyball,
Boxing, Canoe Kayak, Chess, Cycling, Football, Gymnastics, hand ball.
Others Judo, Karate, Rowing, Shooting, Swimming, Table Tennis,
Taekwondo, Long-Tennis, Volley ball, Weightlifting and Wrestling.

August 14th, 2019
Olatunji John

Principal Information Officer

For: Director Press & Public Relations



FG s Proactive Efforts Will Ensure Hitch Free Participation at African

Games – Says Adesola

The Federal Government restated its resolve and commitment to explore

every possible efforts that would ensure and guarantee a hitch free

participation of athletes and players at the forthcoming 12th African

Games, in Rabat, Morocco.


The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports

Development, Mr. Olusade Adesola gave this assurance recently during

his series of visits to the camps of athletes and players that would

represent the country at the Rabat Games.


In his address to the athletes, players and coaches in the camp

centres, the Permanent Secretary stated that Federal Government has

given necessary support to the Ministry that would ensure a hitch free

participation for Team Nigeria. Speaking on the level of the Team’s

participation, Mr. Adesola assured that Federations have conducted

series of internal and external trials in 22 sports across the nation

to assess athletes level of preparation and selection of possible

podium athletes that would represent the nation at the Games.


Nigeria, the Permanent Secretary stated, will present a contingent

size of 562 , comprising athletes, coaches, medical and administrative

support staff to the Games, contrary to the figure of 750 persons

being bandied in some national daily newspapers. Beside acknowledging

the truism that sports is a tool for national unity in the country, he

posited that sports has also been accepted as an instrument of

asserting national strength, relevance and pride amongst comity of



To this end, Mr. Adesola enthused that countries that qualified for

international tournaments and competitions deemed it fit to gallantly

support their athletes and players to global sports venues with a

delegation that would encourage and boost their morale. In this case,

Nigeria, according to him, is no exception,  adding, the Federal

Government through the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports has acted

within the confines of an established tradition to send a strong

delegation of 562 persons, comprising of athletes players coaches and

administrative support staff to the Rabat Games.  In addition, the

Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) which coordinates the team’s

participation at the Games encourages sports loving Nigerians to

travel to Morocco to support the team as well- but at no cost to the

Ministry. Mr. Adesola seized the opportunity to acknowledge the

consistent support and goodwill from the media, as we wish Team

Nigeria a glorious performance at the Games.


On entry  visas, Mr. Adesola stated that entry visas for the

contingent is in process and arrangements have been concluded for the

team’s scheduled departures to Morocco on both commercial and

chartered flights on August 10, 14, 16 and 21,  2019; in consonance

with the Sports events of the Games as the visas are issued.


Ramon A. Balogun

A.D. Press

For : Director, Press




                                                          PRESS RELEASE




In furtherance of its avowed determination and commitment to ensure a

most glorious and excellent performance by our athletes at the

forthcoming 12th African Games (Rabat, 2019), the Federal Government

has urged the country’s representatives (the Nigerian Contingent) to

imbibe discipline, hardwork and focus as they aspire to win laurels

and medals at the Games, which will commence soon this August.


During his series of visits to Training/Camping sites spread across

the geo-political zones of the country, the Permanent Secretary,

Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Olusade Adesola

gave the charge when he visited the athletes at Ahmadu Bello Stadium,

Kaduna; Yenagoa (Bayelsa); Port-harcourt (Rivers), National Stadium,

Lagos and Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos; that would represent the

country at the Morocco Games. In his address to athletes comprising of

Wrestlers, Badminton, Gymnasts, Volleyballers, Judo, Taekwondo,

Table-Tennis, Boxers, Chess and Long-Tennis players in their

respective camps, to interact and also, to address their immediate

challenges if any.


The Permanent Secretary enjoined the athletes and players to be

hardworking, Focus and most of all, disciplined, which is the hallmark

and secret of excellent performance and successes of every sportsmen

and sportswomen, adding, this is the only attitude that will guarantee

them winning medals for their fatherland, and by extension enhancing

individual professional career to become a celebrity on the global

stage, emphasizing , there is no short cut to attaining status of

celebrity and stardom in their career. Furthermore, Mr. Adesola

counsel  our athletes including Wrestlers to the 12th Edition of

African Games in Morocco to be mindful of every rules and regulations

attached to each event in order not to run foul and be disqualified by

Umpires and Officials of the Games. It is also instructive to state

that he reminded our athletes  not to treat any opponent as underdog,

noting that every country is participating to win medals for their



Speaking on anti-doping, the Permanent Secretary said Nigeria is

participating at the Games to compete clean in our sporting events:

Doping, he noted, is cheating and therefore strongly warned all our

athletes and players going to the Games to stay away from Doping,

adding, it is ruinous to your professional career, health and

particularly also, bringing the image of your country to disrepute in

the comity of sporting nations. Sports such as wrestling,

weightlifters, athletes, combat sports etc are particularly vulnerable

to suspicions by Games Officials, who are versed in every dimensions

of doping aided by technology. While exhorting all our athletes,

wrestlers and players to guard against doping by all means; he said,

‘’sportsmen should be very disciplined; because of the career path you

have chosen’’.


The Permanent Secretary seized the opportunity of his visits to

training camps to clarify sensitive issues as training allowances and

grants to athletes and coaches. He explained that details of the

payments would be availed the Federations before departure. Also, Mr.

Adesola reaffirmed that the present administration has a deliberate

policy of paying allowances of athletes promptly.


Athletes at each of the camping centres interacted meaningfully with

the Permanent Secretary and ask questions bordering on their

allowances, quest for international exposures by way of continental

and international championships and invitational tournaments e.t.c


Ramon A. Balogun

A.D. Press

For: Director, Press