The minister of Youth and Sports Development, Barrister Solomon Dalung has appealed to the Federal Government and Private Schools on the need to develop and upgrade sports infrastructures across the country.
Dalung also called on Nigerian youths to participate in sporting activities as a tool for self-development, peace, unity, self-sustainability and empowerment.
He made this known in a statement released by the Special Assistant on Media, Nneka Ikem Anibeze yesterday (April 6 2019), a day set aside by the General Assembly of the United Nations to mark the International Day of Sport for development and Peace across the world.
The minister also enjoined the government to curb poverty, youth restiveness and unemployment by giving sports its rightful place in the society.
“The future of Nigeria lies in its youths. Through sports, we can bring about peaceful co-existence in crisis-torn communities, employment youth empowerment and self-reliance.
“Government should stop seeing sports as a recreation but as a tool that creates wealth, brings lasting peace to troubled areas and empowers the youths.”
The minister called on the government to invest in the youths of the country through the upgrade and development of sports infrastructure, provision of enabling environment for young people to train and develop their talents as well as providing adequate budgetary allocations to the development of youth and sports in the country.
He urged all schools to build at least one sports infrastructure or adopt a sport to ensure that children develop an interest in sports from a young age.
The International day for Sport Development and Peace is marked every April 6 to commemorate the inauguration of the first Olympic Games of the modern era held in Athens Greece in 1896.