Unlike many Administrators that would prefer to firstly make show with perhaps organising many competitions on assumption to office, First ever Woman President of Nigeria Taekwondo Federation, Elizabeth Binga choose to embark on robust Human development shortly after she alongside other board members were inaugurated. In this interview, Binga who is currently a World Taekwondo certified Referee told Blueprint Sports crew why they are toeing this rare path.
Development of Coaches in Nigeria
Now, I can see life in the faces of all the Coaches that participated in the ongoing National Coaches training taking place in the various geo-political zones. They have high expectation. I can see that there is this enthusiasm in them when they get back to their various states they will transfer this knowledge and we will have better grass root development across the country.
Training before organising Competitions
We’ve seen that Human development is very important to us because without developing the coaches and the referees we won’t have better athletes that will compete. In other for us to choose better athletes that will represent the country, first and foremost we just have to train the coaches that are in the states that will help us go to the grass root coaches and athletes, then bring them to the National level to compete because when you have better trained athletes you have lesser injuries but when you have athletes that are not trained properly, we end up having injuries in competitions.
And after that, if the injuries are not taken care of, you find out that even talented athletes are cut off because of injuries. So, human development is very necessary so that we could have very good foundation because without a good foundation, the house cannot stand.
Already, we have covered the three geo-political zones. We are covering the six zones in the country and we hope that at the end of 2018, we will be calling everybody for a national coaching course which will be more comprehensive than what we have done. So, that at the end of the day, we will be having over 200 coaches in Nigeria that will be scattered round the country and doing this great job.
Korea Cup, Nigeria Open and National Referees training
Everybody is in glamour for all the activities taking place in December. The athletes are in glamour for both Korea championship and Nigeria Open. Nigeria Open being the first championship of its kind in this country, we want to put in our best and make it very engaging and interesting for the Athletes and the coaches so that at the end of the day, they will know they have come, seen and conquered.
That is what we hope for. We hope to produce and discover talented athletes that represent Nigeria and do us proud later on at international events.
Piloting the affairs of NTF as first Woman President
Yea, it’s challenging but why I’m calm and relaxed is because of the calibre of people I have on board. On board, there are people with vast knowledge of Taekwondo. They are people who are willing to lay down their life to bring out the best in taekwondo and see that taekwondo in Nigeria blossom globally.
However, they are lot of challenges. If I tell you that they are no challenges, then I’m lying but I have the confidence of my board. I’m not doing this alone. We are doing this as a board. I’m just the one piloting the ship. I’m just doing what the board agrees to do and that is why am confident in them and they are confident in me. I have the confidence in them when I look back, I can see strong men standing by my side, encouraging me and with the their fellow community too. So thank God for that.
Funding as a factor for Nigeria Taekwondo
I will do my best. Like I have said, we will do our best. These entire development programme is a way we also use to generate internal funds. Though that’s not enough, we will source for funds in those cooperate bodies and we want to repackage taekwondo and sell it to the world. We want to rebrand it so that sponsorship will come and help sponsor the game and take it to a better height.