By Stephen Merit
The Federal Government has expressed its determination to continue to collaborate with the corporate and private sector organisations to unlock economic potentials of sports in the country.
The Honourable Minister of Sports Development, Senator John Owan Enoh gave the assurance today in his office at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium Abuja, when he met with the members of the Dream Sports Africa led by its Country Director, Mr Michael Anejo.
Senator Owan Enoh stated that the new vision and thinking of government under the leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu now is that sports is seen as both recreation and business. This he said, was the right approach to jumpstart the desired transformation of sports in our country.
He stated that with this new vision of government, the Federal Ministry of Sports Development under his watch, will continue to keep its door open to collaboration with relevant stakeholders, private sector investors, the civil society organisations as well as the global sports community in order to join hands with the Federal Government in its effort to fully unlock the economic potentials of sports in Nigeria and in the process, unleash one of the most consequential transformations of the 21st century.
The Minister stated further that sports has a great potential for wealth creation, employment generation, poverty alleviation, social inclusivity
and the ability to make substantial contributions to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Senator Owan Enoh noted that private sector organisations have a critical role to play in unlocking these opportunities but that this huge potential has been squandered due to inaction and missed priorities.
He called on the private sector investors and major players in the industry to take advantage of the incentives put in place by the current administration to invest massively in the development of sports in Nigeria.
Senator Owan Enoh explained that in line with
the Renewed Hope Agenda of the present administration, the government has endosed the National Sports Industry Policy (NSIP) approved by the immediate past administration and that the Ministry was committed to ensuring the implementation of the policy especially, in areas such as expanding and improving School Sports Games, implementing a strategic plan to define the growth path for discovered talents, improved welfare for athletes and Public Private Partnerships for upgrade of essential sports infrastructure across the country.
Speaking earlier, the Director, Dream Sports Africa, Mr Michael Anejo thanked the Honourable Minister of Sports Development, Senator John Owan Enoh, for accepting to meet with their organisation to discuss likely areas of collaboration that will drive Sports Development across the country in spite of his busy schedule.
He assured that his organisation will go back to the drawing board and identify critical areas it needs to partner with the Ministry and the Federal Government in its effort at ensuring the realization of the policy objectives of the present administration as it relates to sports development in line with global realities.