Chairman, Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the 18th National Sports Festival tagged Eko 2012, Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire has urged participating teams to embrace fair play during the sporting fiesta.
Speaking during the hoisting of flags for the championship at the weekend, the LOC boss, who is also the Lagos State Deputy Governor; it became necessary for the teams to exhibit sportsmanship spirit in their quest to win medals.
"I wish to urge all participating States that as we strive to win laurels, let us remember that we must play fair, and demonstrate sportsmanship in glory or in defeat. Let us urge all our delegates coming to the Games to compete within the confines of the rules of the Games. Let the spirit of friendship, fairness and togetherness of Eko 2012 shine through all the aspects of this competition, and at the end of the day we will all look back and remember Eko 2012 as an excellent and memorable sporting fiesta," she said.
She however, described the flag hoisting as symbolic as it engenders the unity of the country.
She added: "The hoisting of State flags ahead of the Festival is a symbolic event that represents the unity of our great Nation. It is a cornerstone objective of the National Sports Festival that as flags of the States are lifted up today, so the unity and togetherness of the Federal Republic of Nigeria will be emphasized and celebrated throughout the coming Sports Festival."
Continuing she said: "In addition, the hoisting of the flags confirms the participation of all the States, whose athletes, coaches and officials will journey to Lagos in a couple of weeks to compete in various sporting activities ranging from athletics, football, basketball, boxing, swimming, cycling, and many more."