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SPORTS CURRICULUM: BADMINTON GET THE NOD FROM OLYMPAFRICA

By Oluwole Francis

The Badminton Federation of Nigeria (BFN) has received the approval of the Board of Olympafrica for the inclusion of badminton as one of the sports in the curriculum of its University of Port Harcourt (Uniport) Center in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

Olympafrica is a Sporting Organisation established by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to cater for the sporting and educational development of youths in Africa. It has its Headquarters in Dakar, Senegal and the Center in Uniport is one of its affiliates.

In a letter dated 6th December, 2019, the BFN had written to appeal and make a case for the inclusion of badminton as one of the sports in the Center’s curriculum. The Federation’s appeal was hinged on the fact that the center has been the camping venue for the senior national badminton team during its preparations for recent continental engagements where the team performed very well. The Federation believed that the formal inclusion of the sport in the Center’s curriculum will greatly enhance its growth and development in the country.

It was therefore with great pleasure and appreciation that the Federation received the approval of the Olympafrica Uniport Center’s Board in a letter dated 28th May, 2020 signed by Dr. C.E. Agi.

The approval read in part; “It gives me great joy to inform you Sir that the Olympafrica Center of the University of Port Harcourt has been given permission by the Board of the Sports Institute to start a Badminton Academy.”

The larger implication of this development portends a great improvement in the growth of the game in Nigeria. The center currently has a total number of six (6) sports officially in its curriculum. With badminton coming on as the 7th sport. The inclusion will be in line with one of the key agenda of the present BFN Board which is Grassroots Development.

The President of the BFN, Francis Orbih Esq. was ecstatic on receiving the Olympafrica approval. In his words “this is one of the numerous achievements of the current BFN Board that has grassroots development of badminton as one of its main goals. Having a standard badminton academy in a standard sporting facility like the Olympafrica Uniport center will be a major boost for the growth and development of badminton in Nigeria”. He said the Federation will take advantage of this development in its quest for repositioning badminton for sustainable growth.

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