As weeks turn to days for the start of the Garden City 2011 National Sports Festival, the Rivers State capital will come alive today(Thursday) as the National Sports Festival flag will be officially hoisted by Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.
Top government officials, at both state and Federal levels are expected to witness the event in the Garden City, according to Information Commissioner, Ibim Semenitari.
Already, media representatives from across the country are currently in Port Harcourt for the event that will officially signal the readiness of the host state to commence the Games in two weeks time, precisely July 2.
Similarly, host team; Team Rivers has boasted that perennial winners, Delta, Edo and Lagos are in for a shocker, if they think the host state will watch them cart away the overall winners prize.
“Our Governor, His Excellency Rotimi Amaechi, has been personally monitoring the readiness of the athletes for the festival, and has instructed the LOC Chairman, who is also the Deputy Governor, Dr Tele Ikuru, to ensure that most of the gold medals in the festival are won by the state.
We won’t use underhand tactics, but we can assure you that Team Rivers will not be a push-over at the festival.
Semenitari revealed that Rivers, though not desperate to host and win, also intends to use the Games to make a statement about infrastructures and latest sports facilities.
“When we last hosted the festival at Rivers ’88, the whole world marveled at our facilities and the bench mark went up. Garden City Games is going to change the outlook of the sports festival in Nigeria forever and we expect future host states to come and lease some of the state of the art facilities we have on ground in Port Harcourt”, the amiable Information Commissioner said.