The yearly sporting events of the Lagos State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) sponsored by Med-View Airline has ended at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos with all participants declared as winners.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Games on Monday, October 24, former Director General of the Lagos State Sports Commission (LSSC) and veteran journalist, AyodeleAgbesanwa, charged corporate bodies in the state to emulate the good gesture of Med-View Airlines in area of sports development.
Agbesanwa said with corporate bodies in sports sponsorship like Med-View Airlines, more hidden talents would be discovered.
While commending Med-View Airlines for being the official sponsors of the NUJ Media Games, he urged management of the company to keep up the good work in promoting sports in the country. Representative of the Managing Director of Med-View Airlines, Captain Ogbogu Godfrey, in his remarks at the closing ceremony, reiterated the company’s support for the Games and said there is no going back.
“We started with this sponsorship three years ago and we’ve resolved not to stop. The relationship with the Lagos Council of the NUJ is a good one and we will continue to identify and support the Games in the years to come.
“We want to promise that next year’s edition will be bigger and better than what we witnessed this year by the Grace of God”, he added.z
Chairman of the Lagos Council of the NUJ, Deji Elumoye expressed appreciation to the major sponsor of the Games, Med-View Airline as well as partner, Ajeast Nigeria Limited, bottlers of Big Cola soft drinks. He promised that with the support from the sponsors and partner, next year’s edition of the Games will be unique.
“We thank Med-View for sponsoring the Games for the third year running and our partner, Ajeast Nigeria Limited for associating with us for the very first time.
“We hope they will be there for us next year and with their support I want to promise that next year’s edition will be better and bigger.
“There is no doubt that the economic recession in the country really affected this year’s edition but we thank our sponsors and partner for making sure that we did not disappoint our members though what we expected was not what we got. But like ‘Oliver Twist’ we will continue to ask for more.
“I want to appreciate all our members for making this year’s edition a success. Without them we would not have able to achieve anything even with the funds from our sponsors. And that is why I say we are all winners at the end of this year’s edition of the Games.
According to him, the main objective of the Games is for members to take time out of their tight schedule to relax and keep fit.
“We hardly have time for ourselves because of our tight schedule and we need to be in good health condition as well as keep fit and this is an opportunity for our members to take time off their jobs and relax as well as make more friends and also use the opportunity to see some old ones that they’ve not seen for a long time”.
“Sporting activities is good for the body and we don’t want any sudden deaths among our members hence the main objective of the Games since inception.
At the end of the Games, which was the 12th edition, Voice of Nigeria (VON) emerged as the overall champions of the Games with four gold, four silver and six bronze medals while Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) placed second with four gold, one silver and one bronze medals.
Lagos Information came third with two gold and four silver medals with Business Plus Magazine in the fourth position with two gold, one silver and three bronze medals while The Source Magazine and The Nation placed fifth and sixth with one gold, one silver, one bronze and one gold and one silver medals respectively.
In the seventh position was Federal Information with one silver and one bronze medals while Lagos Television and The Sun Newspapers placed eighth and ninth with one silver medal each.
Daar Communications and New Nigeria Newspapers completed the medals table with one bronze medal each. Gbemisola Babatunde of Lagos Information was the cynosure of all eyes at the Games as she went home with three medals. She picked the gold medal in the ayo event and silver medals in the 100m and 200m events.
Eunice Olile of FRCN and Funmi Soyinka of Business Plus Magazine also distinguished themselves at the games by winning two gold medals each. While Olile won in the Scrabble and Table Tennis events, Soyinka picked her medals in the 100m and 200m women event.
IdowuOgunshina of VON also won a gold in the Draught event and bronze in the ayo event while MiriObot of Business Plus picked the bronze medals in the 100m and 200m women events.
Highlights of the closing ceremony held on Saturday, October 29 at the Legacy Pitch of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos was the third place and final football matches.
In the third place match that presided the final match, VON overpowered Vanguard Newspaper 3-0 to win the bronze medal and emerged as the second runner up of the 5-Aside football event.
The final match really lived up to expectations as the two finalists, defending champions, Lagos Information and The Sun Newspaper thrilled the fans which included the Managing Director of The Sun Newspapers, Mr. Eric Osagie and the President General of the Nigeria Football Supporters Club (NFSC), Dr. RafiuLadipo as well as management of Med-View Airlines and other dignitaries.
At the end of the highly contested match, Lagos Information defeated the hard fighting Sun Newspapers by 2-1 to retain the trophy they won last year.
Dr. Ladipo, who was the Match Commissioner praised the standard of play displayed by players of the two finalists. “If not for their jobs, some of them stand a good chance of playing for the country and I must commend them for their brilliant display,” he said.
Technical Director of the Games, Ayo Bada, attributed the current recession in the country as reasons while some of the media houses failed to participate in this year’s edition of the Games. He however said things would change for good during next year’s edition of the Games.
It will be recalled that a total of 16 media houses in the State participated in this year’s Games which featured eight sporting events namely football, athletics, scrabble, chess, draught, ayo and table tennis.
The participated media houses include VON; FRCN; Lagos Information; Business Plus Magazine; The Source Magazine; The Nation Newspaper; Federal Information and Lagos Television.
Others are The Sun Newspaper; Daar Communications; New Nigeria Newspaper; TheNiche Newspaper; Vanguard Newspaper; The Detective Magazine; Correspondents and Champion Newspaper.