The free football clinic held at Saint Francis Catholic Secondary School, Idimu, Lagos, in February, by the technical team of FC Bulmaro, in partnership with Okakuro Group International Nigeria, is yielding fruits. Akakabota Simeon, a striker, who played for the Wazobia team against the World Side scoring 352 points in this year’s examination has emerged one of the top-10 in 2020 JAMB examination.
In a letter sent to Okakuro Group International Nigeria, a delighted Rev. Fr. Maduabuchi Leo Muoneme, the school administrator expressed the school’s joy and gratitude to Okakuro Group who is advocating and sponsoring sportsmanship and academic excellence in academic institutions across the country. A sports project meant for all secondary schools across the nation, whose vision aligns with the ideals of the performance wear manufacturing company.
He stated that the Wazobia striker’s excellent academic performance was a clear representation of the expression of “a sound mind in a sound body.”
“This is against the conception of many parents that participating in any form of sports is a distraction, and will affect the child’s performance. The child is a great striker in the school. He is clearly an all-rounded student, an excellent leader, and he has broken the record against that stereotype that thinks sports and academics are mutually exclusive. Imagine among 1.9 million candidates he is among the top 10. He wants to study Mechanical Engineering and you and I know that it is not a cheap course by any means,” Fr. Muoneme stressed. He further explained that looking around our country today, a few members of the national team that won the African Cup of Nation in 1980, for the first time, who were still very relevant and doing well were the ones who had good education like Adokie Amesiemeka and Segun Odegbami.
“Excellent leaders are great sportsmen and women, this experience gives them edge above their peers when it comes to performance be it academic or otherwise,” he emphasised.
In her response, the overwhelmed Okakuro Group International Nigeria representative, Ms Idemabasi Mkpokporo, vowed that her organisation would not rest on its oars until it conquers the mindset that children participation in sports is an inhibition to high academic performance and excellent leadership.
“We are encouraged and highly motivated to contribute in our little way to ensure young people with any kind of sport talent is given the necessary encouragement and support in any way legal. You cannot delegate the catalytic import of sports in the total development and nurturing of excellence leaders,” Mkpokporo opined.
She called on government to make sports participation compulsory in our national policy.