By Michael Ofulue, Osogbo
In its determination to revamp the ailing sports facilities and ensure that talented youths are taking off the streets, the Osun state government has mapped out plans to upgrade all sporting facilities in the state to enhance better performance of athletes.
To this end ,the State Governor Senator Ademola Adeleke has directed a total transformation capable of revitalizing the sports industry in the State
The Deputy Governor of Osun State who doubles as the commissioner for Sports Development, Prince Kola Adewusi stated this while addressing journalists at press conference held at Governor’s office in Osogbo.
He said the present government under the leadership of Governor Ademola Adeleke is committed to shape a prosperous future for the people and elevate sports performance at every level.
He added that government will start with grassroots initiatives to the elite athletes at the top echelon and improve on the sports facilities.
“We are particularly concerned about the state of the Osogbo Township Stadium which supposed to be the flagship of all sports facilities at the State Capital. Improvement on our sports facilities will assist our youths to engage in different kinds of sports by bringing them out of the streets.
“This administration has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to sports development in the past few months.
“The Key investments have been made in various facets of the sports industry, including the successful sponsoring of the State contingent to the last National Sports Festival in Asaba and various support giving the State-owned football clubs (1), Osun United Football Club in their campaign in the nationwide league which earned them promotion to the Nigeria National League and the Osun Babes Football Club which will be completely overhauled.
“To achieve a better command of Sportstainment (Sports and Entertainment) industry in Osun State, several strategic steps will be taken:
“A comprehensive upgrade of sports facilities across the State is on our plan. These improvements will extend to the sports facilities in zones such as Iwo, Ilesha, Ile-Ife, Osogbo, Ilesa Orangun, Ede, Ejigbo and so on, ensuring that athletes have access to top-notch facilities.
“We will restructure the Osun State Games Village located between
Ijebu-Jesa and Ijeda in Oriade local government area. This facility will serve as a hub for athlete training and preparation, as well as hosting various competitions, further solidifying Osun State’s status as a sports powerhouse.
According to the Deputy Governor the will set up a State Sports Trust initiative which will encourage multinational ,companies ,private organizations and philanthropic individuals to partner with the government , providing vital
resources to further develop the sports industry.
He disclosed that Osun State Government will establish Sports Commission which will be entrusted with strengthening sports governance , transparency, and control in the management of sports in the State.
“We will thus join the ranks of States such as Delta, Kano, Lagos, Kwara and Ekiti which this concept of management and sports governance is contributory to the success in sports performances.
He revealed that there will be re-Introduction of the governor’s cup:
re -introduction of the intercollegiate games and the principal cup adding that the Government will stimulate under a PPP arrangement, the re-introduction of the intercollegiate games and the principal cup for the students and the youth.
While saying all efforts are geared towards recruiting and training the best administrators, coaches and
athletes to shore up our position within the sports industry and financially rewarding them in all sporting disciplines based on their performance and impute.
“An annual sports award will be set
up to motivate them and step will not only foster intrinsic motivation but also boost overall job performance adding that , experienced coaches who are “retired but not tired” will also be reabsorbed on a contract basis with
competitive remuneration packages.
“Adeleke’s administration is committed to meritocracy in appointments covering sports administrators and other
“Nepotism will have no place while
ensuring that individuals are selected based on their experience, knowledge and skills, aligning each role with
the right candidate.
About the State owned football clubs, Adewusi hinted that the government is working on the restructuring and rebranding of the two state owned football clubs: the Osun United FC
and the Osun Babes FC.
According to him, the new management of clubs will soon be inaugurated to replace the Interim management, saying since the club has gotten promoted to the Nigeria National League it behoves on the Government to support the team to get promotion to the Nigeria Premier Football League at the end of the season.
He said all Contract Coaches, Staffs will be normalized just as he said that the Physically challenged people will be involved in sports so as to discover their God giving talents.
He commended Governor Adeleke for his efforts towards ushering a
new era of sports of excellence, accountability, and inclusiveness, saying the strategic initiatives will not only benefit athletes but also inspire the entire community and the citizens of Osun State to embrace a healthier, more
active lifestyle through sports.