Nigeria’s highest sports decision making, the National Council on Sports (NCS) has recommended that the 20th National Sports Festival tagged “EDO 2020” should hold from December 3rd to 18th, the sportsbay.com reports.
In its 2nd meeting held in Asaba, the Delta State capital, the NCS also released the timetable for the biennial Festival according to a communique issued thereafter.
The opening of the Games Village and arrival for the 1st phase of athletes will begin from Thursday, Dec 3 while the opening ceremony will be on Saturday, 5th Dec.
In a bid to adhere to the COVID-19 protocols, the NCS revealed that the festival will be staggered as Phase 1 competition will be from Dec 6th to 10th while the arrival of athletes for the second phase of the competition will be on Friday, December 11th while they compete from Dec 12th to 16th.
The closing ceremony will come up on Thursday, Dec 17th while the closure of the Games Village will be in Friday, Dec 18th, 2020.
“The Virtual meeting held earlier this year unanimously agreed to host the Festival this year. The Committee of Experts set up during the Virtual meeting made specific recommendations regarding the successful organisation of the 20th National Sports Festival. It has become imperative to tinker with the modus operandi of the Festival,” the communique stated.
The recommendations are however subject to the buy-in of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and final approval by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Sports minister, Sunday Dare who is the Chairman of Council further assured that all the guiding protocols of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID – 19 shall be fully implemented. More so with all infrastructure being in place as confirmed by the National Assembly inspection visit to the state.
In his own submission, the Deputy Gov of Edo state, Hon. Philip Shaibu who was also present at the meeting reechoed the State’s readiness of daily testing for all athletes and officials who will attend the competition.
In the same vein, the national sports council have also made a passionate appeal to the Federal Government to provide special Fund for the building of multipurpose Sports Hall in all the states of the Federation as well as the Federal Capital Territory.
Dare however assured the council that a memo to that effect would be presented to the Federal Executive Council while reiterating that states that already had mini-stadium would be upgraded, while abandoned youth centres across the country would be rehabilitated.