18th July, 2011
A member of the Ogun State delegates to the just concluded National Sports Festival, tagged, ‘Rivers 2011â€™, Hon.Olufemi Allen-Taylor, has described the competition as a charade and not impressive.
The lawmaker who represents Abeokuta South II Constituency in the Ogun State House of Assembly, told P.M. Sports at the Assembly Complex in Abeokuta: â€œThis yearâ€™s sports festival is nothing to write home about, the Rivers State government was not ready for the festival, they just wanted to win at all costs and that was what we all saw at the competition. Many people have been complaining about the competition but some people thought they were crying wolf, I can tell you that this yearâ€™s event was a charade and many sports analysts have condemned it.â€™â€™
Speaking on the performance of Team Ogun at the competition, the lawmaker showered encomiums on the contigents for their excellent outing despite camping for a short time.
According to Allen-Taylor, â€œthe athletes tried a lot. I want to commend the officials and the athletes for making the state proud. These people were camped for just two weeks and despite that, they still put up a commendable performance, kudos to them.â€™â€™
Allen-Taylor disclosed that the state government is not owing any of its athletes that won laurels at the festival as they were paid immediately. â€œWe are not owing any of them.The governor promised each athlete that won laurels for the state certain amount of money, and I can tell you that the money has been paid as directed by the governor. This is to show you that we are not ready to lose any athlete as we are working seriously to tap more from the grassroots ahead of the next festival in Lagos.â€™â€™
Ogun State garnered 19 gold ,26 silver and 43 bronze medals to finish fifth at the Garden City Games 2011.
â€”Abiodun Onafuye/ Abeokuta