By Olusola ‘Jide @jide_olusola
The chairman, Accreditation sub-committee of the 19th National Sports Festival, Dr Emmanuel Igbinosa has given more insights into the expected number of athletes and officials to participate in the Games.
In a chat with Daily Trust, Igbinosa who is also a deputy director in the Sports Ministry stated that over 14,000 athletes and officials have registered for the Festival but judging from experience from past editions, not more 8500 will participate.
“It is difficult now to state the exact number of athletes now, but I know that more than 14000 athletes and officials were registered with Delta states having about 1600. But judging from past festivals, we will be having not more than 8500 athletes and officials,” he said.
He further stated that there is an ongoing Delegation Registration Meeting (DRM) for all the states and FCT that will be participating in the festival which will end on the 19th of November “though we have a window of 2 extra days in case of spill overs,” he noted.
He is, however confident of the FCT to host a successful Sports Festival, which will start on December 6 and end on December 16.
Meanwhile, the Sports Ministry announced the closure of the Abuja National Stadium for any activities as of the end of this week to allow for proper cleaning and maintenance ahead of the Festival.
The stadium will be used for opening and closing ceremony in addition to other events according to Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports development, Adesola Olusade who doubles as the chairman, Main Organising Committee for the Festival.