MINISTER of Sports and Youth Development, Sunday Dare, has enjoined president of federations that have qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games to speed up preparations in order to brighten the country’s medal haul at the quadrennial event.
Dare gave the ultimatum during his consultative meetings with the board of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) and Nigeria Badminton Federation (NBF).
“My meeting with you (federation presidents) is to know the areas of need and how to channel resources towards achieving the desired goal with emphasis on Tokyo Olympics,” Dare was quoted as saying during the meeting.
“The success of any nation in sports is to be among the podium finishers in their event that they have comparative advantage; Nigeria needs gold medals in Tokyo and we must work towards achieving it. It is possible and we know we can do it.”
While commending the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) for D’Tigers Olympic qualification, Dare asked the Engineer Musa Kida-led body to ensure that the national women’s team D’Tigers also qualify for games next year.
He equally reminded the federations to gear efforts towards winning gold medals at their respective events, adding Nigeria last won gold at the Olympics over two decades ago in Atlanta 1996 in the men’s football event and long jump by Chioma Ajunwa.
Meanwhile, Minister in his scheduled routine meetings with the sporting federations is expected to parley this week with Nigeria Weightlifting Federation (NWF), Nigeria Wrestling Federation (NWF) and Athletic Federation of Nigeria (AFN).