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NSSF urges governments to intensify efforts at reviving athletics in schools

The Nigeria Schools Sports Federation (NSSF) has urged governments at all levels to revive the athletics sport in secondary schools so as to develop future sports champions for the country.

Dickson Tinism, NSSF’s Vice President 1, made the call while speaking with journalists at the 2021 Maltina School Games on Thursday in Bauchi.

He said track and field sports, such as shot-put, high jump, running and long jump, among others, have been neglected in schools.

Tinism added that there was the need for governments at all levels to revive such sports by providing facilities and encouraging students to participate.

“The Maltina School Games has been an avenue for supporting an all-round development of young people through physical activities and sports across the country.

“We should be grateful to Maltina for organising such a competition to complement government efforts in sports activities.”

Tinism, who is also the Adamawa State Coordinator of NSSF, explained that the Maltina School Games platform was carefully designed to promote the development of children.

“From improving their social and leadership skills to bettering their well-being through sports, the Games have well designed.

“Sports and education have been veritable instruments of lifting millions out of poverty and for Maltina, with its School Games initiative; more people will enjoy the results.

“The platform is getting the needed attraction that will further aid the development of talents in the country,” he said.

On his part, Mikhail Adamu, a Director in the Bauchi State Ministry of Youth and Sports, commended the efforts of Maltina in encouraging the young students.

“Maltina has played its part by creating a talent expressive platform for young boys and girls to develop themselves.

“This is unlike in my days, when we only participated in inter-house sports and occasionally in invitational school relay races.

“This platform from Maltina is one that will open the doors for more opportunities for young athletes in the country, “ he said.

Chiamaka Kingsley, a student at Central Junior Secondary School Alkaleri, said the competition has motivated her and others to continue with sports.

“I got a medal from the 400 metres competition, and I am overwhelmed because this is my first time. This is the beginning and I will not relent,” she said.

Kingsley also called on government to provide school sports facilities and organise competitions among schools to get the best athletes among the young ones.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the overall best athletes of the Maltina School Games would be announced after compilation of the results.

Meanwhile, three schools emerged winners of the parade.

The first winners, Divine International School, got a cash prize of N500,000, and the second winners were Sa’adu Zungur Secondary School who got N300,000.

The third winners were Adamu Jumba Junior School who got N200,000.

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