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Federal Government Hands over Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium to Enugu State Govt

By Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

The Federal Government has formally handed back the management of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium to the Enugu State Government.

Speaking during the handover ceremony held at the Government House , Enugu Tuesday, representative of the Federal Government and Director General of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye, said  the event followed  the approval by President Goodluck Jonathan, of an application to that effect made by the Enugu State Government.

Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu

Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu

The NSC boss, noted that the state had over the years collaborated with the Federal Government in maintaining and rehabilitating the Stadium, saying it had made huge financial investments in the provision of vital facilities for the successful hosting of the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2009.

Hon. Elegbeleye added that “This act convinced the Federal Government that the Enugu State Government was capable of maintaining the Stadium, in line with approved international standards”.

Sports he said, remains a unifying factor and a tool for international diplomacy, adding that it also assists in wealth creation.

The NSC D-G, enjoined other states in the Nigeria to emulate the Enugu state example in the development and maintenance of sports infrastructure.

He commended the reactivation of School Sports by the State Government, saying that it will greatly enhance the discovery of talents for the benefit of the Nigeria.

Responding, on behalf of the State Government, Governor Chime expressed delight at the return of the Stadium to the State, assuring that it will be better managed under the state ministry of Sports and Youth Development.

The Governor said that his request for the return of the Stadium was prompted by the decision of the Federal Government to sell some of the facilities in it, adding that this had prompted anxiety in the State that the whole Stadium could be sold to outsiders.

Chime, therefore commended President Jonathan for his prompt response to his request and assured that the Stadium will not only be well managed but will also be accessible to all and sundry.

All we are interested in is just to promote sports. Take our assurances on this to the Federal Government and be rest assured that the standard will go up rather than go down”, Governor Chime promised

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