By Oluwole Francis
Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Olusade Adesola has hailed the Francis Orbih led board of the Badminton Federation of Nigeria, BFN, for their efforts in promoting the Para-Badminton Games.
Speaking on at the closing ceremony of the BWF/BCA Para-Badminton Workshop held at the Gymnastic Hall of the Moshood Abiola stadium, Olusade who represented Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare noted that the activities of the BFN is in line with the agenda of the Minister who has advocated that efforts must be geared towards improving the capacities of Athletes.
“The agenda of the honourable Minister, Hon. Sunday Dare believes that there is need to build the capacity of Athletes if they are to excel. We cannot be doing the same thing the same way and expect a different outcome, and one of the ways to do it differently, is to train and build the capacity of our athletes and the coaching crew. In that way they will be exposed to new way of doing things with the emerging technology and they will be able to excel.
“And you know the rules and regulations guiding this sport are not static, they keep changing with time and the only way you can get to know it is when you go for refresher courses. So, it is in this regard that I commend the board of the BFN for this event,” he said.
Olusade also stressed that the ministry will be looking into the request of the Badminton Federation who had complained about the lack of equipment and training facilities to properly train the Para-Badminton players.
Responding the BFN President said that the immediate goal of the Federation for the Para-Badminton is to ensure their qualification for the 2020 Olympic in Japan.
“I said earlier we had the sponsorship from Kaduna State Government to attend the world championship for the Para-Badminton but because of visa issues they could not go.
But we are trying to see if they can attend other championships where they can get the qualifying ticket for the Olympics in Japan. So, the Para-Badminton team for Nigeria stands a good chance to qualifying for the Olympics.
“For Para-Badminton again, we are having discussions with the Badminton Confederation of Africa, BCA, to see the possibility of having the first ever Para-Badminton International championship in Nigeria. We have never had it. In Africa, Uganda has hosted it continuously, no other country. For the first time, maybe next year we might have an International Para-Badminton championship in Nigeria.