By Muftau Ogunyemi
Akure – Mr Dotun Owanikin, the Ondo State Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, has reiterated the readiness of the state government to partner with Non- Governmental Organisations for the development of sports in the state.
Owanikin expressed this commitment while receiving members of the National Association of Women in Sports (NAWIS), Ondo state chapter on Tuesday in his office in Akure.
Owanikin said the government was willing to always support sincere motives that would help promote sports in the state, admonishing the association to be resilient in achieving its goals.
According to him, partnering with private organisations and individuals is the new way to develop sports in this current dispensation.
He stressed that the association needed to work assiduously to discourage doping and age cheating among athletes and imbibe the culture of talent-hunt among the young ones.
The commissioner, therefore, urged the group to promote inter school sports at the primary and secondary school levels in order to catch them young in their localities.
“This is our concern. We have to do the needful to develop sports and assist the youth with all our efforts even in the face of paucity of funds.
“As a ministry, we are there to assist you to achieve your noble goals but you need to be selfless in promoting sports and avoid over-reliance on government for funding,” he said.
Earlier, the president of the association, Princess Adejoke Adebusoye, said they were at the ministry to seek the support of the state government to achieve its objective of promoting sporting activities.
She listed the objectives to include, promoting morals, good conducts as well as encouraging athlete’s development and education.
Adebusoye, who laued the performance of the state representatives at the 2019 National Youth Sports Festival in Ilorin, urged the ministry to build on that feat of 7th position in the forthcoming festival in Benin, Edo in 2020.
She, therefore, called for the commissioner’s support towards achieving NAWIS aims and objectives and hosting of its forthcoming National Conference in December.
Adebusoye added that the association was yet to be represented at the National Sporting Federation due to its absence at the national forum and paucity of funds.