President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday reassured of his administration’s commitment to develop sporting activities in the country.
The President who stated this when he received briefing from Sports Minister Solomon Dalung said despite the current economic challenges, his administration remained committed to sports development.
Dalung later told State House reporters that Buhari congratulated Nigeria for clinching the seat of the executive member of Confenderation of African Football and the progress so far in sports.
“He (the president) promised that even though we are economically constrained, government will do everything possible to ensure that it continues to support the progress of sports generally,” the minister said.
Dalung noted that the nation’s appearance at the 2018 FIFA World Cup holding in Russia was not yet guaranteed despite topping the qualification group.
He said, “I updated him (the president) on the need for us to intensify our mobilisation efforts for the World Cup qualifier. Although we are topping the group, it is not yet Uhuru for us. We need to do more. I drew his attention to the fact that we have received the Queen’s Relay baton which kickstarts the mobilisation for Commonwealth Games in Australia in 2018.
“The baton is a commonwealth tradition which is always flagged off by the Queen and she did that in March. It has been to six African countries with Nigeria being the seventh and it will proceed from here. The significance of the baton is its wake up call to countries to begin to prepare for the games.
Nigeria has always performed very well in the games. There is a need for us to try and surpass our record in the next games.”
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