Amidst cheers and fanfare, the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki on Friday flagged-off a 31-day countdown to the National Sports Festival, scheduled to take place in the state, noting that the competition will further unite Nigerians.
The governor was accompanied by his deputy, Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu, and other members of the State’s Executive Council to the flag-off ceremony, held at the Government in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
Obaseki reaffirmed that the state was ready to host over 11,500 athletes and other sports lovers from across the country that are expected for the tournament.
“This is a festival of unity for Nigerians; it’s a festival to encourage Nigerian youths and a festival that will take the country to the next level. We are here this afternoon to begin the countdown. It’s exactly 31 days from today. The festival will be declared open on the 22nd of March, 2020. For a big event like this, we have to commence the publicity from today.
“We will engage media across the nation, beginning from today as adverts for the festival have commenced. We have written to television and radio stations and even newspaper houses and they have agreed to be part of the show.”
On his part, Shaibu said a total of 11, 500 athletes are expected for the sports festival, adding that proprietors of hotels across the state have been contacted and agreed to give a 30 per cent discount for accommodation.
“10 days to the opening of the game, we will publish the names of the hotels and the prices of the rooms to enable our visitors check and know which they can afford,” he added.