The Minister of Sports, Sunday Dare has warned athletes against use of prohibited substances as stipulated by Anti doping Agency.
Sunday Dare stated this at the opening ceremony of the 5th edition of the National Youth Games held at the University of Ilorin, Kwara state.
The Minister who was represented at the opening ceremony by Dr. Ademola Are, Director of Grassroot Sports Development in the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports Development and NYG Coordinator however expressed delight with the presence of over 4,000 athletes from about 33 states for the games.
He said the several talents have so far been discovered from this game since inception and has done the country proud but nationally and internationally, while urging that the tempo should be sustained.
“To all the participants, I urge you to see your role in this game as a stepping stone to greater height bearing in mind that there is joy in participation and sportsmanship, therefore do your best in your respective areas, by competing clean, without the use of prohibited substances as stipulated by Anti doping Agency “.
He expressed optimism that the 2019 National Youth Games (NYG) would produce podium athletes like previous editions.
”At the maiden edition in 2013, the discovered athletes represented Nigeria at the 2014 African Youth Games in Botswana and 2015 Commonwealth Games in Samoa where laurels were won. At the third and fourth edition, the discovered athletes represented Nigeria at the African Youth Games in Algeria. So, it is my hope that this edition will follow in the same notable path of history by producing podium athletes,” Dare said.
He added that sports in Nigeria has grown tremendously and contributed in no small measure to the socioeconomic growth and national unity of the country.
Kwara state Governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq said the current sports challenges in Nigeria was surmountable through training and retraining of athletes, coaches and stakeholders.
Abdulrazaq who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youths and Sports, Mr Shuaib Akanbi said youth development and empowerment was the strategy of governance used to engage the youths positively.
”I urge you all to resist all temptations to get rich quickly without working hard as it will lead to failure and destruction” he said.
The Vice Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Professor Suleiman Age urged the participants not to jeopardise the ideal for which the competition was instituted.
”There should be no ill feelings at any point in the competition; we should all imbibe the spirit of sportsmanship.
Rivers and Ekiti states are yet to arrive for the youth games as at the time of filing this report.