As OMSA makes Minister patron, inspects sporting facilities
By Gabriel Ewepu – Abuja
Ahead of the Sahel Game on October 9-19, 2021, organised by the Organisation of Military Sports in Africa, OMSA, to be hosted by Nigeria, the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume, Wednesday, expressed optimism that the tournament will bring about strong military collaboration in combating terrorism and other security challenges in the subcontinent.
Akume stated this while delivering his acceptance speech on the occasion of his investiture as patron of OMSA by the President of OMSA, Brigadier General Maikano Abdullahi, who led a delegation to the Minister at Merit House, Abuja.
The Minister said the game is coming at the right time when there are a whole lot of insecurity issues affecting member countries.
He said: “It is my great delight to welcome the President, Organization of Military Sports in Africa (OMSA), Board Members and the Executive Members to Nigeria. I appreciate you for finding time to include the investiture ceremony as part of your activities.
“I also want to use this opportunity, to on behalf of myself and staff of the Ministry especially welcome the delegation from the 15 Countries to Nigeria. I believe that your meeting will help promote peace and foster unity as well as strengthen the collective resolve of the Armed Forces of the Member Countries to defeat any common enemy (especially ISWAP) against peace and security of the subcontinent
“As an indication of my interest in the activities of the Organization and as a lover of sports, I have accepted to be one of your Patrons and also, to be part of the Team that will take the Tournament Torch to Mr. President at the presidential villa, Aso Rock. Let me also inform you that your request for financial support to host the first edition of Sahel Games in Abuja in the last quarter of 2021 has been forwarded to National Lottery Trust Fund for positive action (s).
“I sincerely accept and appreciate this honour and assure you that the government and leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari will continue to engage and encourage all well-meaning Nigerians in the protection and sustenance of our nationhood and development.”
Earlier the OMSA President, Brigadier General Maikano Abdullahi explained the purpose of their visit which also included inspection of sporting facilities in Nigeria ahead of the games slated for October 9-19, 2021.
“This gathering, they are here in Nigeria; one to see how we can move my organisation to the next level, secondly for them to observe our facilities for hosting the next Sahel game on October 9-19.
“To see ourselves and see our patron. We have Sahel game Patron but the Honourable Minister is the Patron of our organisation. By implication it means whether he is abroad, whether he is at home in Benue, whether he is in Abuja, whether he is in Lagos, wherever he is, he is going with us and we are going to follow him. I have no doubt in my mind, he is our organisation’s patron, and whatever we expect, we think will happen in good terms with OMSA will happen”, Abdullahi said.
He added, “Sir, we have 15 countries here to pay homage to you and to witness your decoration as OMSA patron. They will leave this country by Thursday and Friday and they very much appreciate coming to Nigeria and meeting our Patron.”