The Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be different for team Nigeria. According to the Youth and Sports Development Minister, Sunday Dare, the Nigerian government has done everything to ensure the athletes remain motivated to excel.
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The minister was speaking to several media outlets where he assured Nigerians that their team has all it needs to perform well at the Olympics. Dare also revealed that they had used a Public-Private Partnership approach to ensure athletes have all they need for the Olympics.
Moreover, he assured the Nigerians that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics would be special. He also revealed that the private-public partnership gave birth to a new initiative dubbed “Adopt-an-Athlete.” In the initiative, several corporate, state governors, and interested individuals adopted athletes. Through the initiatives, those involved will participate in taking care of the athletes financially and their welfare. Dare revealed that this year’s target is to perform better than the team that took part in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
The minister also briefed the media on how they were taking care of the athletes’ health with regards to the coronavirus. Furthermore, he revealed that they had formed a Nigerian Olympics Committee the same way other countries have Olympic Committees. Furthermore, he revealed that the Nigerian government was working closely with the NOC, IOC, and the Government of Japan through the Japanese Ambassador.
Dare said that the government was aware that the IOC has a guideline and book on COVID-19. He also assured the rest of the nation that they were focused on ensuring that all the athletes remain safe. Additionally, the minister revealed that they were also working on the vaccination of the athletes.
For instance, he stated that they were aware of the 14-day guideline of getting the COVID-19 test before the start of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. At the moment, all athletes that will represent Nigeria at the Olympics have had their first shot of the vaccine.
Nevertheless, the IOC has stated that the participating athletes don’t need to take the shot. But, Dare has stated that they will still go ahead with their vaccination plans. The minister also said that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 had offered the Olympics Committee sufficient support.
The team has a total of 52 participants spread across sports such as athletics, basketball, wrestling, gymnastics, table tennis, rowing, taekwondo, and basketball.
Nigerian fans are particularly optimistic about their basketball men’s team. They will be depending on their NBA stars and other professional basketballers from Europe to help the team go further in the tournament. Moreover, athletes like Adegoke and Okagbare have recorded impressive times during the trials. As a result, they have given the Nigerians hope of a different Olympics.
This year’s Olympics will be different for all the participating teams. However, the Nigerian team has an interesting blend of talents that could perform really well.
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