My Mission is to reposition Sports in Imo -Ogbonnia


 By: Everest Ezihe

Worried by the decay in Imo State sporting activities, in terms of infrastructures, sports developmental programmes and motivation of sports men and women resulting to the State in the recent time loosing her sporting prime of place in Nigeria and global community, Prince Eleazar Ogbonnia says he is on a mission to positively change the narratives by his passionate but patriotic mission of repositioning sports in the State.

Ogbonnia who's the  Chairman of the State Sports Commission disclosed this when members of Sports Writers Association of Nigeria,SWAN, Imo State Chapter led by Rotarian Everest Ezihe paid him a courtesy call at his Obinze, Owerri West LGA ancestral home.

The Chairman who assured of the willingness of his office to have a collaborative partnership with Sports Journalists in Nigeria in terms of sports development and sustainability pointed out that sports is 100% business oriented and that sports administrators have no reason for solely depending on government in terms of finances.

According to him" I am a servant leader. Things must change for better. As a team player, sports men needs motivation. Am a committed Jewish, if in the course of execution of my job details, there's no transparency or corruption, I will immediately resign and go back to U.K. People should not depend so much on government for sports developments and promotions, because sports is purely 100% business, we must use sports to generate money for government" he insisted.

He pointed out that he has set the ball rolling in terms of wholistic programmes for an institutionalized Governor's , Principal's and Headmaster's  Cups among others in which grassroots Football, Hockey, Handball, Basketball, indoor games, field and track events etc will be seriously involved.

The Chairman also reiterated his efforts in reviving the state sporting activities in what he christened "operation catch them young" through inter house sports, annual local governments and state sports festivals.

He expressed happiness that Governor Hope Uzodimma is sports loving and committed in ideas and programmes that would revive the State sporting glories.

The Ex- International Footballer turned business man further revealed the mutual partnership he has with some foreign Sports Commissions who are willing to assist Imo State Government in terms of her visions for sports development and transformation. 

According to him "less than one month of my appointment, 8 highly rated foreign football clubs have invited Imo based footballers for contract signing screening, infact one of them, a top club in Sweden has already accepted one of the players to Join them. I have mounted specialized cameras in Dan Anyiam Stadium and even repainted  the entire stadium with my personal money. I have personally touched some of the State's Sports associations like Handball, Judo, Basketball etc just to motivate them. I am not looking for power but to give back to the society" he assured.

Ogbonnia decried the extent of youths unemployment in the country which he attributed to their being fragile to criminal and anti social vices and seriously canvassed on the need of engaging them meaningfully as a strategic means of curbing insecurities.

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