The Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) has thrown its weights behind calls for the private sector to take up leading roles in financing of sports in the country.
Rising from its Annual General Meeting in Lagos on Tuesday, the NOC insisted that the federal and state governments can no longer be left to bear the responsibilities of sports funding given the dwindling resources available to them.
In a seven-point communiquÃ© issued at the end of the meeting, NOC observed that corporate bodies in Nigeria were not committed enough to supporting sports and therefor appealed to such bodies and philanthropists to support sports.
â€œGovernment cannot do it alone any more. The Corporate Nigeria must play a leading role henceforth in sports development,â€ the Olympic body noted.
As a way of ending the unnecessary conflicts plaguing most of the national sports federations whose boards were elected last June in Abuja, NOC directed them to review their constitutions immediately and align them with their international bodyâ€™s rules and guidelines.
â€œAll national federations must conclude matters of reviews and approval of such statutes by their congresses and international federations on or before June 30, 2018 with ratified copies submitted to the Nigeria Olympic Committee,â€ part of the communiquÃ© stated.
Also, the NOC called on the federations to encourage their members seeking positions in international bodies to achieve their aims, saying such moves would aid Nigeriaâ€™s sports development.
â€œNigerians aspiring for positions in international federation and confederation boards should be encouraged by all means as they play very important roles in the delivery of results by athletes in the sports field.
â€œAs a result, the â€œpull-him-downâ€ syndrome, where current federation officials constitute barriers to election or re-election of eligible Nigerians should be discouraged,â€ it noted.
NOC restated its resolve to continue to work with the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports for the overall development of the sector in the country
It therefore urged all stakeholders to ensure that Nigerian athletes excel at the various international multi-sport games line up for next year. They include; the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, Africa Youth Games in Algiers, Algeria in 2018 and the Winter Olympic Games (Bobsled) in Korea 2018.
Other upcoming events include; the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina and the 2019 All Africa Games. Tokyo is to host the next Olympic Games in 2010 in Japan.