Nigeria’s minister of sports/chairman of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Dr. Tammy Danagogo, has identified sports as a catalyst for social development and peaceful co-existence.
The minister made this statement when the special adviser to the president on special duties and social development, Mrs. Sarah Pane, paid him a courtesy visit in his Abuja National Stadium office.
Dr. Danagogo opined that sports and social development were closely related as it can serve as a developmental platform to tackle specified social issues in the society.
Speaking further, the minister noted that sports can be employed to unite individuals and communities highlight common interest as well as bridge cultural, gender, religious and ethnic divides.
“Sports have the capacity to bring about peace and prevent conflict thereby strengthening interaction between communities, peoples and culture,” Danagogo emphasised.
He further stated that his goal as the sports minister was to make sports a way of life, saying that sports had been identified as a ‘considerable ingredient of a healthy way of life and keeping fit’.
As a way of life, Danagogo stressed that sports develop force, dexterity and accuracy which can amongst other things preserve good physical health and also egendered strong leadership traits necessary for building a formidable society.
“The skills and values learned through sports are especially important for the youths given that they are the leaders of tomorrow,” he added.
The minister consequently pledged the commission’s readiness to collaborate with the office of the special adviser in its efforts to encourage young and exceptionally talented children who want to develop their career in sports, maintaining that one of the cardinal objectives of the NSC is not only to hunt and discover talents but also to nurture them to podium athletes that will bring glory and honour to Nigeria.
Earlier the special adviser, Mrs. Sarah Pane, had said that she was at the commission to seek the assistance and collaboration of the NSC to organize a pre-season international tournament in Abuja and Lagos and also to seek the minister’s approval to raise funds to take three young girls under the ages of 10 who had demonstrated exceptional talents in the areas of sports to Europe for career training in chess and table tennis.
She used the occasion to call on all well meaning Nigerians to place premium on sports and join hands with the National Sports Commission to encourage sports development in all its ramifications.
The project, she revealed, would entail inviting eight top football clubs in Europe and Africa for a tournament during the pre-season period in 2015.