17 September 2012

Nigeria: Never Again Will Nation Under-Perform in Sports, President Jonathan Declares

Photo: Vanguard
Nigerian paralympic team.

President Jonathan has reiterated his determination to ensure that the Nigerian sports sector was revamped for optimal performance at future international engagements by the country's athletes.

Jonathan who declared his intentions on Saturday in Abuja at a reception he held for Paralympian athletes and female footballers said Nigeria's lost sports glory must be restored.

"Our performance at the London Olympic Games was a huge disappointment. Therefore, we must revamp the sports sector, so as to make sure that there is no recurrence of what we had recently. "We must increase our medals haul, we must learn from our mistakes, we must restore our glory days, and we must prepare our youths from the early age.

"Each state must start taking sports more seriously, and we must upgrade our facilities and prepare well ahead for competitions and send our athletes out to hone their skills in order to be able to compete well," he said.

The President who said the Paralympic athletes brought smile to the faces of Nigerians who were worried about the poor outing of the able-bodied athletes said their performances restored hopes.

"They have wiped away our tears. Our hopes have been re-kindled. The message they have sent is that we need a greater passion in what we do.

"Their performance confirms that every citizen is important, and that is why this reception will send a clear message that all Nigerians are important," he said.

Jonathan said his administration, in view of the importance it attaches to sports, would be taking hard measures in restoring Nigeria to its rightful place in world sports.

"We need to now look to the future, because we used to be well known for our great performances in boxing, athletics, football, weightlifting.


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