Shooting sports is about taking a new dimension in the country as the four days trip embarked upon by the President of Nigerian Shooting Sports Federation(NSSF), Brigadier-General Lonsdale Oladeji Adeoye(Rtd), to Kano State, two months ago, may soon start yielding dividends.
The President disclosed this while highlighting the benefits of the all-important trip in an exclusive interaction with the Media Directorate of the NSSF recently in Abuja.
According to him, Kano State is opening a new vista for the growth and development of Shooting Sports both in the North-West and the entire Northern Region.
General Adeoye said the four days trip to the ancient city which began from 21st to 24th July, 2020, offered him and the Federation the leeway to numerous hidden potentials and programmes available and on-going in Kano State.
The NSSF chieftain, while explaining the rationale behind the visit, stated thus:
“Following extensive discussions with the NSSF Coordinator of North-West, Mr. Thomas Shelsuk, and based on special request from the North-West courtesy of the Kano State Shooting and Hunting Sports Association, I and one of the NSSF Board members, Eche Amos, decided to undertake the crucial trip where we met with relevant stakeholders in the State, some of whom were Chairman of the Kano State Sports Council, Ibrahim Galadima; Director, Department of State Services(DSS), Kano State, Hassan Muhammad Makusidi; and several other visits to some notable locations thought to be suitable for the establishment of shooting ranges, such as the Governor Ganduje Stadium, Kano Shooting Range at Kofar Na’isa Field, Bagauda and Tiga Dams respectively.
“Already, there is an existing Shooting and Hunting Sports Association. Kano State have gone far in shooting sports and they are intending to bring in the other North-Western states along with them.
“Kano State has done well at various championships in shooting within the country. And suffice to say that Kano State has shown great zeal and interest for shooting sports, and therefore has the potentials to be the hub for the entire North-West.”
General Adeoye stressed that the lively tour of locations across one of the most populous States in Nigeria has further encouraged the NSSF to comb the entire North-West for more talents even as Kaduna State poses great competition against Kano State.
“Kano State is blessed with young and promising shooters, and their marksmanship amazes me, too.
“We need to harness the raw potentials in that State for better productivity.
“The two Dams give us an ample opportunity to think of recreating shooting sports in Kano State, especially the Tiga Dam which has all the requirements needed for the establishment of a shooting sports range there – it has natural ground, top-class hotel, beautiful weather and other serene features.
“The hotel built by the former Governor of Kano State, late Audu Bako, for the Queen of England, Her Royal Majesty, Elizabeth 11, some fifty years ago, is still standing strong with accommodation, and other state-of-the-art facilities.”
While describing Kano State as the kind of location suitable for establishing shooting sports ranges and hosting games, the NSSF President promised to assist the State in developing its budding shooting athletes and provide them with necessary supports.
“Kano is a great tourist destination because what we saw on ground are reminiscent of what the international community is looking for.
“They should be ready to participate in major national or regional shooting activities as the NSSF will train their shooters to prepare them for other national sporting activities.
“And we will ensure they meet and collaborate with the right sources to enable them continue with their trainings.
“Also, the NSSF will donate two air rifles, two air pistols and five paper targets to the Kano State Shooting and Hunting Sports Association as an encouragement to their zeal and passion. This, we feel, will open the vista for them to showcase their talents to the world.”
General Adeoye thanked the Governor of Kano State, Umar Ganduje, for the massive support he is giving to Shooting and Hunting Sports Association in the State.
“The Governor is a silent achiever in sports. He donated a mega gym to the Kano State Shooting and Hunting Sports Association as well as allotting spaces at the Ganduje Sports Stadium to the Association to construct shooting ranges.
“This is pretty unique in its entirety”, the NSSF President revealed.
The President also thanked the Chairman, Kano State Shooting and Hunting Sports Association, Alh. Dr. Abdullahi Bashir, and his team for the hospitality accorded him and his entourage, even as he appreciated his foresight for setting the precedence for others to follow.
He promised to work hand-in-hand with the Kano State Shooting and Hunting Sports Association to sustain the tempo.
He said the NSSF is working assiduously with relevant stakeholders to send valid documents to the Kano State Government for partnership with the NSSF and its affiliate in Kano State for the overall development of the game both in the State and region