By Omolade Durojaiye
The Minister of Sports Development, Sen. John Enoh, on Thursday explained why he relocated his office to the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.
According to him, the minister said he wanted to personally supervise what was going on in the sports centre and ensure that things were put in the right place.
“I did a tour of MKO Abiola Stadium, Abuja, and I insisted that instead of having my office at the Secretariat, my office as Sports Development minister has to be at the stadium.
“I have taken that decision already, I have an assignment to make the ministry work and we have to make it work. MKO Abiola Stadium is where we have 90 per cent of the departments of sports.
“The stadium is where we have all the federations’ secretariats, athletes and footballers. For the purpose of coordination and to keep a watchful eye, it is imperative that my office is at the stadium.
“I don’t mind the challenges; what matters to me is the gain in the sports sector. I have also issued a memo to the permanent secretary that the remaining sports departments should be at the stadium,” he said.
Enoh restated that his main focus would be development of sports and how sports could be used for the development of the country.
“The focus as a sports minister is going to be in two folds; one is the development of sports, the grassroots development, infrastructure and amenities at the grassroots level where the real talents are domiciled.
“I want to see those talents from Ajegunle developed into elite sportsmen. We want to go to those places where there are fewer opportunities, or may not get the opportunity to express themselves.
“I want to provide, like a basketball court for those in the hinterland and others. A lot of times, the great boxers are not produced in the high brow areas but in the local environments.
“I want to provide these things and not just saying it, and at the end of my tenure, we want to count tangible things that have given us social inclusion which will translate to sports development,” he said.
As part of his ongoing efforts to assess the state of major sports facilities in the country, Enoh inspected the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, on Thursday.
He started his inspection from the stadium complex, where he visited the National Institute of Sports, the boxing complex, mainbowl of the stadium, sports medical centre, indoor sports hall and other facilities.
He also inspected the Games Village hostels, Legacy Pitch, Power House, as well as the courts for different sports.