The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, has described sports as an instrument of national integration and a critical ingredient in the development and growth of Nigeria.
He made this assertion when he received members of the Research Institute Games Association of Nigeria (RIGAN), led by its president, Prof. Fortune Owolade, who paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Abuja.
Onu hailed sport as one of the activities that have improved national integration and unity, which are of great importance to the nation’s strength in diversity.
“It is our diversity that gives us enormous strength to bring together human beings with different talents, skills and capabilities that, when put together, helps us succeed in everything,” he said.
Onu further stated that Nigeria has enormous resources in her various regions and, if combined, will create tremendous opportunities to explore and exploit for the good of her citizens.
The minister commended RIGAN for its contribution in helping the country to achieve national integration through games by raising sports personalities who have gone on to represent Nigeria internationally.
Onu said, even though his ministry’s goal remained to make Nigeria a knowledge-based, innovation-driven economy, it must contribute to sports development. This, he said, is the reason it would assist the RIGAN to make its activities first class, to enable Nigeria to compete with other nations internationally.
He equally promised to engage all the ministry’s agencies to contribute their quota to ensure the organization gets adequate funds.
Intimating the minister on the purpose of their visit earlier, Owolade said the organisation came to present the schedule of its games, set to hold from November 25 to December 5, 2021, tentatively and request financial assistance from the ministry to enable RIGAN to execute the games without hitches.