Lagos, June 11, 2019 The organisers of the just-concluded 3rd Magic Tour Cycling Competition on Tuesday bemoaned the bureaucratic process involved in getting public schools to participate in grassroots competitions.
The Team Lead of the Organising Committee for the competition, Ikechukwu Agada, told the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos that this process had made it difficult to monitor the progress of talented young cyclists who attend public schools.
He said that one-third of the 500 children that participated in the recently concluded annual cycling competition, which held at Teslim Balogun Stadium on Friday, came from private schools.
“Our interaction with private schools has been encouraging because it is easier to monitor children from private schools, as a result of quick response to communication unlike the public schools.
“You can follow-up and get the private schools to participate at tournaments without much hassles, which is not the case with public schools because of the cumbersome process involved.
“Some of the directors in charge of public schools ask for money to transport the children to the venue before they can be allowed to participate in competitions, meant for grassroots sport development.
“I sincerely do not see anyway forward, regarding encouraging grassroots sports development in public schools if the directors continue like this,” he said.
Agada therefore, urged the Lagos State Government to look at easing the process of grassroots sports development in public schools to encourage entrepreneurs facilitate sports development in the state.
He said that the aim of grassroots competitions such as Magic Tour, was to help children to discover their sports talents and also create avenues for them to showcase the talents.
According to him, talents discovered at such tournaments can be nurtured to represent the country at international meets.