As they get set for the start of the maiden edition of the National Youth Games, Director General of the national sports commission, Gbenga Elegbeleye has explained the essence of the games during a chat with BrilaFM.
Elegbeleye stated that this will serve as an opportunity to produce new sporting talents for the country as it continues in its effort to give outstanding performances in international championships most especially the 2014 common wealth games in Glasgow, Scotland next year and the 2016 Summer Olympic games in Brazil.
“We believe that the younger generations should compete together rather than with adults at the national sports festival which now is supposed to be an open competition with athletes coming to participate even from other Nigeria athletes based in other parts of the world”
“The national youth games (NYG) is for Nigerian athletes from age 17 and below and when they excel very well, we now proceed to move them to the high performance level” the DG said.
The games is billed to start on Thursday 5th -15th December, 2013 in the federal capital territory, Abuja.
Similarly, special assistant on media to the sports minister Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, Julius Ogunro has assured that steps have been taken to verify the true ages of the athletes, thereby check-mating age falsification.
“We already have a committee saddled with the responsibility of screening the athletes to make sure that they meet with the age requirements by taking into consideration the physical appearance of the athletes, their birth certificates and above all, we have people who are quite experienced in organizing age-grade competitions”.