Malam Ibrahim Mohammed, President, Nigeria School Sports Federation (NSSF), says inadequate funding from the Federal Government has hindered the federation from organising school sports festivals.
Mohammed said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Thursday.
NAN reports that school sports had in the past produced the best of sports men/women in the country, such as Mary Onyeali, the Ezinne brothers, Yusuf Ali among others.
“The problem of not having the festival is that the country will not be able to discover new talents, and that is how the whole sports of this country has been eroded.
“Without state governments taking turns to host school sports festivals, we survive based on what government decides be it at the federal or state level.
“For almost four years we have not had this festival, it’s so unfortunate, apart from the corporate bodies that have their own competitions, we need to do more,’’ he said.
He noted that there could be no genuine grassroots development without paying attention to NSSF.
“Because the younger ones are not given chance to display their talents how can we replace them. So, obviously those old athletes that are fading out they may not have replacement.
“So, obviously in the nearest future, you will discover that Nigeria will continue to go down than where we are now.
“It is very clear that the position of the country in sports now is not like what it used to be in the 1970s and 1980’s when the country was known all over the world.
“Nigeria is falling in sports, now you can see our performance at the international competitions, and even in the Africa soccer games, we are going down continuously.
NAN reports that the 2015 edition was held in Ortukpo, Benue, and Cross River won the competition. (NAN)