Sports minister Dare backs Aisha Buhari Cup with N50m

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By Muhyideen Jimoh/Abuja

The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has donated N50 million Naira to the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the Aisha Buhari Cup to ensure the success of the competition.

The minister, made the announcement on Tuesday when the LOC paid him a courtesy visit in his office.

He said the international women’s football invitational tournament, billed for Lagos in September, has the potentials of boosting the development of women’s football and uniting the nation.

He commended the LOC for the wonderful work they had done so far and the efforts made to host a successful competition, in spite of challenges.

“I knew you started all these with little or no funds, but seeing how much progress you have made and positive strides you have taken showed me that you are miracle workers.

“I have read a lot about what you have done even when I was at the Olympics,” he said.

The minister assured that all necessary support would be provided to make the competition a huge success, because of its potential to further encourage more participation in the women’s game.

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“When the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick told me of the plans to stage the competition, the first question I asked him was if he had enough time to see it through.

“He said yes and I promised to lend him my support hundred percent. I’m glad that the event is now a reality, the competition will not only excite and inspire our people, it will also unite us.

“Whatever will unite people has the full support of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, so my support is total, especially since it has to do with women’s football.

“FIFA is unapologetic about the development of the women’s game, the competition is going to attract more women to football,” he added.

Earlier, the LOC Chairman for the competition and NFF first Vice President Seyi Akinwunmi thanked the minister for all the support in hosting the competition.

He noted that six of the top women football playing nations in Africa including: Ghana, Morocco, Cameroon, South Africa, Mali, Cote d’Ivoire and host, Nigeria, would be taking part in the competition.

Akinwumi, however, appealed to the minister to assist in fast tracking entry visas for the participating teams.

The Aisha Buhari tournament will take pace in Lagos from Sept. 13 to Sept. 21 at the Agege Stadium and the refurbished Mobolaji Johnson Arena, Onikan

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