For the President of the Nigeria School Sports Federation (NSSF), Olabisi Joseph, the maiden Maltina School Games has threw up talents for the country just as she urged corporate bodies to take a cue from Maltina.
The maiden Maltina School Games involved three states, Lagos, Anambra and Kano as well as Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja with millions of students competing from the local government preliminaries to the state finals which culminated in the National Finals held in Lagos last week at the Yabatech Sports Complex with Lagos emerging as champion.
Joseph has called on corporate brands to emulate Maltina by supporting school sports. “From what we have seen, it’s fantastic and the kids are excited about it. We hope in the next edition we will have a larger house and that it will be bigger, that is why each of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were represented in the march past.”
“Even from the local government level, we have witnessed great display of talents. This games has been a great platform for the kids to showcase their talents and if not for this event we will not know that we have kids in the school system who can run the times we witnessed during the tournament.
“For each of the kids we have their records, we have their biometrics and we will package all the data and send it to the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports, the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) and the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC). It is expected that they will be nurtured by the national coaches and in the next few years we will see these kids running for Nigeria and doing us proud,” she added.
Excited by the turnout coupled with the display by the participants, the NSSF boss said: “For what we have seen here I’m excited and look forward to the next edition with more schools and participation We are grateful to our sponsors and with this we can expose the kids to other sports and for us at the NSSF we want to ensure that we touch all the sports and that is why we want to spread the tournaments to other sports aside athletics; hence we want to say a very big thank you to our sponsor Maltina for their support and also to call on other corporate brands to come on board let us join hands to change the lives of these children who might take to social vices if we don’t engage them now.”
Listing the benefits of sports, Joseph said: “School sports is a wonderful way to engage the youths as it improves their health and well-being; it will help them physically and mentally. Research has shown that it stimulates learning and it will help build their character. From participating in school sports they will learn about determination and discipline.”