The former African heavyweight boxing champion, Mr Ngozika Ekwelum has express high desire to open a boxing academy in Awka, Anambra state.
The retired pugilist who disclosed this during an exclusive interview with The Authority in Awka yesterday noted he has a burning urge to use the channel to take size able number of boys and girls off the streets and out of the burgeoning cases of anti-social acts.
Giving what seem like a sneak preview of his proposed package, the soft-spoken ex-boxer stated he would kick-start the process with a boxing clinic at all the 21 council areas of the state. That he intends to raise between 10-20 talents from each council and then train and turn them to world beaters in different categories.
According to him, he has the full proposal of the novel idea with him, but would like to discuss it first with the Anambra state Commissioner for Youth/Sports, Omelora Tony Nnacheta. He noted that Nnacheta from all indications remains one of the biggest sports administrators Nigeria has produced and has shown sincere commitment to restore the state to its height and glory in sports entertainment and grooming of notable sportsmen/women in the country.
While anticipating positive results from the state government, he expressed readiness to welcome other sponsors who were willing to assist in the drive.
The former champion who refused to waste at home or wallow in self-neglect said it was unfortunate that some states prefer ad hoc and fire brigade approach in sports development.
He said that the sport which is youths-oriented needs systematic procedure that grooms enthusiasts from the cradle up to championships.
He regretted that the team he raised for the state ahead the last national sports festival has now been left to go rusty.
Mr. Ekwelum observed that they need to be made constantly active with competitions, tours and regular trainings.
He also recommended that they need to be together for a period more before they begin to benefit through competitions and helping themselves as well as the state and the nation to become winners.
From Chuks Collins
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