By Luminous Jannamike
ABUJA – President, Nigeria Judo Federation (NJF), Prince Timothy Nsirim, on Thursday, said the current board of the federation has put plans in place to effectively manage and reorganise the sport in line with international best practices.

Chika Chukwumerije at the Beijing 2008 Olympics where he won a bronze medal.

According to Nsirim, “the last forty-five years have not been good for Judo, but we have promised Nigerians that Judo will take a new turn in the coming years. The current board will reorganize the sport in line with the international best practice module.”

To this end, he disclosed that the federation has concluded arrangements to host a National Open Judo Championship billed to kick-off at the Ogbe Stadium, Benin, Edo State from the 13th of December 2017 with bouts in the Senior, Junior and Cadet Categories for both males and females.

He explained that the Championship, named after Loveth Howell, a former National Champion, will also serve as a national ranking event for both judokas and referees.

On Nigeria’s recent Gold Medal in the 70kg female category, bagged by Winnie Gofit of the Nigeria Army, at a recent African Judo Invitational, Nsirim described Gofit as the shining light of Nigeria Judo.

“Gofit has been consistent in the last two years or thereabout and she has done us proud every time she steps on the mat. She is the shining light of Nigerian Judo and we hope she will be an inspiration to the younger generation of judokas,” he said.

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