Kola Daniel, Media Aide to the Minister of Sports
Exclusive

Exclusive: Paris 2024: FG to open training camps in Germany, Holland, Morocco for Team Nigeria

"We have carefully selected training camps for athletes in Germany, Holland, and Morocco so Team Nigeria can train at the highest level and compete at par when we get to the international stage"

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With Team Nigeria poised to surpass the amazing feat achieved at Atlanta 1996, the Federal Ministry of Sports Development says it has carefully selected training camps in Germany, Holland, and Morocco to put Nigerian athletes in good shape for Paris 2024.

Persecondnews recalls that Nigeria’s best outing at the Olympics was in Atlanta 1996.

Despite having subpar preparation for a tournament of that status, the Nigerian Dream Team brought hope and pride to Nigeria as they etched their names in sporting history.

Defying all odds, the young but experienced Nigerian squad achieved the unimaginable—they conquered the world and claimed the gold medal in the men’s football competition at the 1996 Olympic Games.

This momentous victory not only made history for Nigeria but also marked an unprecedented achievement for Africa and the entire black race.

In an exclusive chat with Persecondnews, an aide to the Minister of Sports Development disclosed plans to spur Team Nigeria to glory at the upcoming Olympics in Paris in 2024.

The Special Media aide, Mr. Kola Daniel, said: “We are ready to surpass the record of 1996, and the ministry is ready to sacrifice financially in ensuring that Team Nigeria has the best preparation ahead of the games.

“We have carefully selected training camps for athletes in Germany, Holland, and Morocco so Team Nigeria can train at the highest level and compete on par when we get to the international stage.

“The ministry is also concerned with the welfare of every travelling athletes, I can guarantee you that no complaints will be heard.

“If you cast your mind back to the Nation’s Cup in Ivory Coast, the Minister rallied around President Bola Tinubu in ensuring that no player or backroom staff was owed a dime; he replicated the same gesture during the All African Games in Ghana.

“The Minister of Sports prioritised the welfare of every sportsman and woman because the welfare of every athlete is a determinant factor of their success.

“The Sports Ministry just rounded up its maiden National Sports Council Meeting in Enugu, where we deliberated on the way forward for Nigerian sports and the Olympics. Our commitment to ensuring Nigeria has the best outing in the Olympics is unwavering.”

The Interview:

PSN: At what stage is the Ministry attracting private investors into the sector to drive sporting and economic growth?

Daniel: “Sports have significant potential for socio-economic growth; sports is a major industry with the capacity to generate employment, drive economic development, and improve public health.

“The Ministry is aware of these, hence the meeting in April between Sen. John Enoh with prominent business leader and Chairman of Heirs Holdings, Tony Elumelu, and founder and chairman of BUA Group, Abdul Samad Rabiu.

“The meeting was geared towards the development of a systemic structure that addresses the underlying challenges within the sporting ecosystem and builds a robust framework that tackles issues from the grassroots level up.

“Under the leadership of President Bola Tinubu and the Renewed Hope Agenda, the government’s commitment to revitalizing Nigeria’s local league and restoring its former glory is on the front burner, and with time, I assure you, it will materialize.”

PSN: The Nigerian League has been on break for over a month due to Rivers United having six outstanding games. What is the ministry’s take on this situation?

Daniel: “Sadly, we are taking this route again. We need to understand that the new leadership of the league, led by Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye, is doing a great job, and I know they will resolve it in the future.

“The truth is, we need to align our calendar with CAF. You have to understand that we are just playing a supervisory role, and we are working with the federation to ensure that the lost glory of Nigerian football is restored.”

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