The National Council on Sports has approved the dates for the 21st National Sports Festival in Delta State, dubbed Asaba 2022, from November 2 to 15, 2022, just as Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, described Delta State as the nation’s sports development incubator.

Speaking at the Extraordinary National Council on Sports meeting in Asaba, Delta State’s capital, the Minister thanked the State for hosting the important sports meeting, stating that Nigeria’s sporting successes would not be complete without the State’s contribution and the giant strides of her athletes.

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“As a result, we are on the verge of another National Sports Festival (NSF), which we refer to as our own Olympics.” The National Council on Sports is meeting today to keep the Council up to date on developments and deliberations regarding the hosting of the 21st National Sports Festival, which Delta State won the rights to host in November 2022.”
“It’s worth noting that Delta State took first place in the recently concluded Edo 2020. We are now delighted that they will have the opportunity to not only host, but also to validate their first position. Following the award of the hosting rights to Delta State, the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has continued to work with the Host State to fine-tune the road map in preparation for the NSF,” Dare said.

The Minister praised the National Council on Sports for its dedication and perseverance in sports development, as well as the support he and the Ministry have received over the past two years.

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He also thanked the host Governor, Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa, for his significant contribution to sports development, noting that the nation’s success at the recently concluded Tokyo Olympics would not have been possible without the 12 athletes adopted by the Governor through the Ministry’s Adopt-an-Athlete initiative.

“He single-handedly adopted the greatest number of athletes, and we are grateful that one of the two medals we won was won by one of the Governor’s athletes.” The Minister stated, “That is Ese Brume.”

The Minister announced that the Ministry, in collaboration with the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF), has established a Department that is solely responsible for the National Sports Festival and Para-Sports in order to elevate the National Sports Festival as Nigeria’s version of the new Olympics. “As a result of this development, para-sports has also received the attention it deserves,” the Minister concluded.

In his remarks, Governor Okowa thanked the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development for the opportunity to host the National Sports Festival, promising to not only exceed the standards set by Edo 2020 but to make the 21st edition of the games the best ever.

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the hosting of the NSF dubbed “Asaba 2022” by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and Minister Chief Sunday Dare was the highlight of the event.

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