*37 sports listed for Abuja 2018
Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports and its marketing partners have unveiled the permanent logo and mascot of the 19th National Sports Festival to be hosted in Abuja between December 6 and 16.
The Abuja 2018 games logo is represented by the iconic city of Abuja gate, which serves as access to all Nigerians irrespective of their ethnicity and creed.
The unveiling was conducted yesterday when the Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung, presented Greenfield Assets as the games official marketers.
The Federal Executive Council had ordered the games to be moved to Abuja to avoid further collateral damage to it after the original hosts, Cross River State, repeatedly postponed it due to financial constraints.
Sport Ministry and Greenfield Assets sealed a partnership agreement to form the National Sports Festival Marketing and Management Company.
The agreement will concede to Greenfield Assets the rights to deliver five editions of the games for 10 years.
According to Dalung, 10,000 athletes and officials will participate in the games while the number of sports to feature has been increased from 25 to 37.
The games touch of unity fashioned after the Olympic Touch will be flagged off by President Muhammad Buhari at the Presidential Villa on October 1 and will move round the 36 states of the federation before returning to Abuja on December 6.
Zonal eliminations for team sports will take place simultaneously in all the six geo- political zones from October 8-13.
FCT Minister Malam Mohammed Musa Bello, said that the FCT Administration had adjusted the school calendar to accommodate the games. Bello, who was represented by the FCT Permanent Secretary Raphael Chinyekaa Ohaa, assured that Abuja would stage a games that will remain the reference edition in the history of the National Sports Festival.