FG partners private firm to make NAFEST world-class event

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FG partners private firm to make NAFEST world-class event

By Esbee Oguns

The Federal Government has handed over hosting and sponsorship of National
Sports Festival(NAFEST) to a private firm, Greenfield Assets Limited in order to sustain and further develop sports to global height among Nigeran youths .

The arrangement was concluded on Wednesday by Barrister Solomon Dalung, Minister of Youths and Sports Development, in his Abuja office.

According to Dalung, efforts of governments to harness indigenous sports talents and develop athletics through festivals have not yielded desired results.
“FG can not sponsor NAFEST forever, Cross River offered to do same but could not host the event for over four years.
“Government can not continue to host national sports festival, we hereby partner with Greenfield while FG still retains ownership.
“Greenfield will mobilize other sponsors and resources for festival. There are lots of business opportunities in the
event, ” he said.
In his response, Paul Obanua,managing director, Greenfield said “we will take the festival from its comatose state to a profit making event.
“It will be viable to athletes,officials,sponsors and the federal government through deliberate efforts”he said.
on how the organization wanted to turn it around.
“We will start to organise pre-fest from August ahead of the festival in December,where foreign celebrities and Nigerian celebrities will perform together in Nigeria.
“We intend to have Usain Bolt, Tu Face and other celebrities sensitising the world about the event, ” he said.
He also expressed optimism on possibility of the festival turning to annual event.

When the festival, which it’s last edition was held in 2014 resumes, 25 sports will be contested by the nation’s young athletes.

Various sponsors within and outside the
country have been signifying willingness to be part of the sporting event.

Biola Lawal

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