Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan Wednesday night announced various rewards to Delta athletes who participated in the Garden City Games. Delta placed second behind Rivers. In the past eight festivals Delta has won four and the governor charged the athletes to regain their first position in the 2012 Lagos games.

He announced automatic employment to all athletes who won gold and silver medals as he had done in the past. He also awarded N500,000 to each gold medalist, N300,000 to silver medalists and N200,000 to each bronze winner. Those who did not win anything still got N50,000 as participation bonus.

One of the high points of the award night at the Grand Hotel Asaba was the award for meritorious service to Steve Onyeacholam, a foremost swimming coach who retired from civil service at the Garden City Games. He had risen to Director of Sports, Technical and was honoured on the night. A citation written and read by Willy Soho, Director of Orientation at the state’s Ministry of Information was so moving that the governor promptly appointed Onyeacholam a consultant to the state sports commission.

Wife of the governor, Rolly, presented the award to Onyeacholam.

Another highpoint was the award presented to the governor by the Director-General of the National Sports Commission, Dr. Patrick Ekeji for his role in sports development in the country.

Uduaghan also announced that Delta will reintroduce sports in schools and that students will compete in an annual competition to be named Awoturu Eleya Cup which he said would hold in the format of Griam Cup of yester years. It is also to honour the veteran sports administrator who is now approaching 85 years.

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