Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari has flagged off the movement of the Torch of Unity for the 20th National Sports Festival billed to hold in April this year in Benin, Edo State.
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare, hosted the ceremony at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Buhari said his administration was committed to fostering an enabling environment for sports at all levels in the country.
He also lauded the Sports Minister for his doggedness that has kept the youths positively engaged in line with the mandate set by the administration.
“The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development is the biggest constituency for keeping the youth busy and the minister is doing a good job in that regard,” Buhari said.
President Buhari presented Torch of Unity for the 20th National Sports Festival to the minister who in turn handed it over to the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Gabriel Aduda.
Dare stressed the significance of the Torch of Unity to the National Sports Festival as a symbol of unity, peace, friendship, tolerance and hope among Nigerians.
He also thanked Buhari for attaching a lot of importance to youth and sports development in Nigeria.
“I am particular joyous that this landmark event in our strategic plan for the Festival is being undertaken by Mr. President himself. This act is a testimony of the importance the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari attaches to youth and Sports development in the country,” he said.
The minister also used the event to intimate President Buhari on the ministry’s ‘Adopt an Athlete’ campaign which received a nod from the president requesting all Nigerians of goodwill to take advantage of the project to be part of those uplifting the fortunes of sports once again in the country.
Some of the dignitaries at the event include; Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha and Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Sadiya Umar Farouq.