The Akwa Ibom State government is all praise for the grass roots development initiative of MPN, Operator of the NNPC/MPN Joint Venture.
Speaking in Uyo on Saturday, during the closing ceremony of the two week Athletics Holiday camping programme of 165 students of the state, Governor Godswill Akpabio said Mobil deserves commendation for “ its consistency in the grass roots sports development over a decade in the state”
In a speech read on his behalf by the Deputy Governor of the State, Her Honour Lady Valerie Ebe, the Governor noted that Mobil’s gesture has contributed in no small gesture to the overall development of sports in the state and Nigeria at large.
Governor Akpabio stressed that introducing the camping exercise for the talents discovered in the previous championships shows that the organizers did not only go after talents from the grass roots but were also interested in the developing the young talents to attain international status, maintaining that the exercise took another dimension compared to the previous years.
“I acknowledge the numerous community development programmes which serve as a way of giving back to the society.
Your involvement in sporting activities is a demonstration of concern for the development of talents at the grass roots” The Governor said.
Governor Akpabio expressed optimism that the talents trained in the two weeks exercise would represent the state and Nigeria in international competitions in no distant future.
He commended the organizers, coaches, and other facilitators for their painstaking effort of identifying and developing talents among the young ones for the benefit of the state and nation.
In his speech the Special Adviser, Bureau of Youth and Sports, Mr Samuel George said the programme was necessary to replace old and faded stars and also commended all those behind the initiative.
The Commissioner of Education Professor Atim Antai in her speech congratulated the athletes for being among the best to be selected and urged them to continue to practice what they have been taught.
In their address, MPN, through the General Manager Public and Government Affairs Mr Paul Arinze, said the camping and training of the athletes was aimed at taking the yearly championship to another level. Hence the provision of equipment, and training of the students to improve on their skills and tactics.
Mr Arinze observed that “…..the two weeks programme had exposed the athletes to extensive coaching and mentoring in the areas of drills, mobility, velocity, use of spike shoes and starting blocks among other equipment”
The students later exhibited some of the skills learnt in Calabar to the admiration of all those present.