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AU Sports Commission calls for youth empowerment via sports



The African Union Sport Council (AUSC) calls for the need for the social engagement and empowerment of youths through sporting activities.

Ms Lina Kessy, Interim Head, AUSC said this on Thursday in Abuja at the maiden Young Leaders in Sports seminar organised by the AUSC.

She told the Nigeria News Agency that sports was a veritable tool that can be used to empower and engage the teeming youths in Nigeria and Africa as a whole.

Kessy noted that the AUSC will be working closely with the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to educate and create opportunities for Nigerian youths.

“Sports is a cross cutting issue that speaks the language which is understood by young people.

“That is why we are collaborating with the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to educate and empower our youths, ” she said.

She explained that the seminar was organised for youths in the West African sub-region to groom them in sports management and administration.

She expressed optimism that at the end of the four-day seminar, the youths would have been well informed in order to train others in their respective countries.

“In line with Agenda 2063 Aspiration 6, the AU Sport Council in collaboration with the AUSC Region 2 took the step to train young leaders in Sports as trainers in the area of sport management and leadership,” She added.

Kessy stressed the need to build the youth’s capacity in Africa sports so that young people can begin to occupy administrative and decision making positions in line with international best practice.

NAN reports that the four-day seminar has participants from the West African sub-region in attendance.


edited by Sadiya Hamza

Muhyideen Jimoh: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]


Sports Minister congratulates UFC Champion, Usman



The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, on Tuesday lauded Nigerian-born pugilist Kamarudeen Usman for retaining his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight belt against Jorge Masvidal.

Dare said, in a statement on Tuesday, that Usman’s win was not only inspiring, but a confirmation of the Nigerian never-say-die spirit.

“A big congratulations to Usman for making Nigeria proud by retaining his Ultimate Fighting Championship title against Jorge Masvidal.

“His tenacity, courage and consistency is typical of the Nigerian spirit of never giving up. He is not only a worthy champion, but a great Nigerian in whom we are all proud.

“Once again, he has shown that he is not just a patriot, but an embodiment of a great athlete who has projected the image of our dear country before the whole world positively.

“You are indeed a great Ambassador of Nigeria,” the minister said.

Usman retained his title via unanimous decision in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

The fight was almost called off due to a disagreement over pay because Masvidal was named as a last minute replacement to earlier challenger Gilbert Burns who pulled out after he tested positive to COVID-19.

The feat is Usman’s 11th successful win in 3 title defence in the United Arab Emirate.

Usman earned 600,000 dollars appearance fee and 40,000 dollars as incentives, while his challenger got 500,000 dollars

The Nigerian Nightmare has won 16 of his last 17 fights, losing only to Jose Caseres in 2013.

Edited By: Joe Idika/Felix Ajide (NAN)




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Para-Athletes, Coach commend Sports Minister over palliatives



A National Para-Powerlifting Team Coach, Feyisetan Are and some other para-athletes on Monday commended the Minister of Youths and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, over the palliatives to disabled athletes.

The medal winning coach, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria said that the palliatives had come as a huge relief to the affected athletes as a result of COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.

Are said that the effect of the COVID-19 had been sore to the disabled athletes, adding that the affected athletes needed more support to complement the minister’s gesture.

“”It has been a very tough call for our members during the COVID-19 lockdown to the extent that many are now doing menial jobs to stay alive, with this, it has been with little income.

“”We have to thank our honourable minister of Youths and Sports Development for deeming it fit to come to our aid. It’s such a good gesture that he recognises us.

“I believe that the minister has set a template for others to follow because government cannot do it alone; others should also support what Dare has done for us.

“”For example, if an able bodied man gets N10,000 as palliative, then a disable person should get double, like N20,000 because of his condition. An able bodied can struggle to fend for himself, but we cannot.

“”Our only means of livelihood is sport which is not in place again because of COVID-19, we need more help from well-meaning Nigerians,” he said.

Also, Nigeria’s and five-times Paralympian, with three Gold and two Silver, Lucy Ejike, commended Dare for the gesture, adding that the palliatives had come at the right time.

“”A special thanks to the minister for his kind gesture, especially the money given to us, it has gone a long way in helping and motivating us.

“I received my palliative from the minister and I also get a promise of more.

“My colleagues also got theirs as well. This will help because the stipends we are collecting before had ceased because of the lockdown,” she said.

Another Para-athlete, a Gold medalist in Powerlifting at Rio 2016, Kehinde Paul, said that the palliatives coming from the Sport’s minister was because of his fatherly role to the disabled athletes.

“”The sports minister has played a fatherly role by coming to our aid in this tough times because we have not been active for a while.

“I have been trying my best to train in my local gym to keep fit, but I must commend the minister, he has really tried for the para-athletes and the physically-challenged. We got money to buy foodstuffs.

“The money will help us and for upkeep of our families and I believe that we will still have more from the minister, it’s a gesture that will remain in our memories,” he said.

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)

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Kwara LG Sports Coordinators urge Sports Director to revive school sports



Kwara LG Sports Coordinators urge Sports Director to revive school sports


By Olayinka Owolewa

Ilorin, July 9, 2020 (NAN) Association of Local Government Area Sports Coordinators has called for the revival of School Sports Festival in Kwara state for primary and junior secondary schools to enhance grassroots sports development.

The association made the call during a courtesy visit to the new Director of Sports, Coach Ibrahim Atanda, in his office at the Kwara State Sports Council on Thursday.

Chairman of the association, Dapo Ayilara (Ifelodun Local Government)congratulated  Atanda on his appointment and prayed Almighty Allah to grant him wisdom and knowledge to pilot the affairs of the council.

He said the athletes, when discovered early, would rise to become world champions in their chosen sport.

Responding, Atanda commended the association for its support.

He thanked the state Governor Malam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, for the opportunity given to him and promised to do all within his powers to move sports forward in the state.

He also commended the governor for the distribution of sports equipment to selected secondary schools in the state, a move he said would encourage grassroots sports development.

Atanda said that 65 per cent of participants at the Kwara State Sports Festival were students, pointing out that the importance of the local government area sports coordinators could not be overemphasised.

He charged them to be more pro-active in their respective areas and not rely on ready-made athletes pledging the council’s technical support to them.

Among the coordinators who were part of the visit done in compliance with Civid-19 protocols were those from Ilorin South, Ekiti, Asa and Ilorin West.

Others were from Oke-Ero, Ilorin West, Oyun, Irepodun, and Moro.

Also on Thursday, some members of the Kwara Baseball and Softball Association, led by Coach Jide Abidoye and selected members of Kwara United Football Supporters Club, led by the Chairman, Alhaji Imam Moshood, paid the Director a courtesy visit.(NAN)


Edited By: Chidi Opara/Donald Ugwu (NAN)

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General news

Nasarawa State House of Assembly pledges to support sports



The Nasarawa State House of Assembly says it will give priority to activities of Nasarawa United Football Club and other sports in the state, considering the importance of sports to societal development.

The Chairman, House Committee on Youth and Sports, Mr Salihu Iyimoga, spoke when the Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Mr Othman Adams, led management of the ministry to the 2020 Budget performance presentation at the assembly in Lafia on Wednesday.

Iyimoga said that sports, apart from enhancing physical fitness, also unite and promote peaceful co-existence among the people irrespective of their affiliations, hence the assembly’s determination to promote it.

He expressed the need for the commissioner, his management team and other stakeholders in the sporting industry in the state to unite and find ways to get the sector a lifeline.

“The assembly will support the ministry with legislation and other necessary assistance that will enable Nasarawa United Football Club, its junior team and Amazon to succeed in all ramifications,” Iyimoga said.

He assured the ministry of the committee’s readiness to collaborate with it in order to improve standard of living of the youth and other citizens.

Iyimoga expressed the need for unity and understanding among ministry officials especially the management of the ministry so as to achieve optimal result.

On his part, the Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, commended the committee for being active in supporting activities of the ministry.

Adams said that the state government was committed to the development of sporting activities towards tackling youth restivessness in the state.

He announced that the ministry had a five-year policy aimed at turning around its activities.

The Chairman, Nasarawa United Football Club, Mr Isaac Danladi, commended the committee for supporting the club and called for its sustenance.

Edited By: Razak Owolabi/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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Boeing Dreamlifter transports 500,000 face masks for Utah students, teachers




Boeing on Wednesday announced the completion of its 12th COVID-19 transport mission, using a Boeing Dreamlifter to bring personal protective equipment (PPE) to the United States.

The company transported 500,000 donated protective face masks bound for students and teachers across Utah returning to classrooms this fall. The state of Utah will distribute the face masks free of charge to school districts across the state with the greatest need, the announcement said.

Boeing donated the cost of the mission transport into Utah, with Atlas Air operating the flight on behalf of Boeing.

“Boeing is proud to continue to use our resources to help stop the spread of COVID-19,” said David Calhoun, Boeing President and CEO. “Today’s delivery, our 12th COVID-19 response airlift mission, expands our support of essential workers to include teachers and their students across the state of Utah so they have the protective tools they need to safely and confidently return to their classrooms.”

“As students return to school this fall, it will be important that they have masks available,” said Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert. “We thank Boeing and these partners for everything they’ve done to support our ‘A Mask for Every Utahn’ initiative and make it possible for our students to have these masks and help keep Utahns safe.”

Similar to previous airlift missions facilitated by Boeing, the Dreamlifter – a converted Boeing 747-400 Large Cargo Freighter – flew the mission with the face masks stored in the lower lobe of the airplane. Following the delivery in Salt Lake City, the Dreamlifter will return to its home base in North Charleston, South Carolina, for a 787 components delivery in support of the global aerospace supply chain.

To date, Boeing has helped transport more than 4 million units of PPE since its first COVID-19 transport mission from China on April 18, according to the company.


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Game over for sports hoping to rely on coronavirus insurance



Major sports events working to get back up and running after the coronavirus crisis are likely to have to do so without cancellation insurance for communicable diseases.

This is because insurers have removed cover or ramped up the cost.

The Wimbledon tennis championships will be covered by an existing pandemic policy after this week’s event was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

However, its organisers say they would not be able to get similar cover next year.

“All the policies that we are seeing at this time have a complete exclusion for communicable disease,” Warren Harper, Sports & Events Industry Practice Leader in insurance broker Marsh’s international division, said.

World Athletics also said that as far as it was aware, there were no longer insurance policies available for the coronavirus.

This reluctance to offer cover comes after Lloyd’s of London estimated that insurers worldwide will hand over 100 billion dollars in pay-outs this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

These include pay-outs for cancelling sports, music and industry events.

Insurers say they will need government’s help if they are to provide pandemic cover as sports groups try to plan future tournaments after much of the 2020 fixture list was cancelled.

Only larger sports competitions usually buy “communicable disease” cover, which comes as an add-on to a cancellation policy.

But, they typically do so at least a year in advance, insurers and brokers said.

This means some tournaments taking place this year or even in 2021 could still be able to make claims.

Two major United States golf tournaments have cover for 2020, said Simon Henderson, executive director of broker Gallagher’s sports practice, without naming them due to client confidentiality.

Golfing association PGA of America declined to comment on its insurance, while PGA Tour said it did not have cancellation insurance for all its tours but bought it “on a periodic basis”.

Brokers said those few insurers still offering communicable disease cover were asking for an upfront premium of up to 50 per cent of the amounts insured.

This is in comparison with a fraction of a percentage point before the pandemic, and few were expected to pay this.

The Australian Open said although it had pandemic cover for previous tournaments, including 2020, the situation made it “prohibitive going forward, certainly in the short term”.

A lack of insurance is leaving some organisers crossing their fingers that they will be able to run their events.

“The organisers plan, of course, for the future. But they are not able to get communicable disease cover and they basically take it on their own risk,” one senior underwriter said.

Some events and their suppliers may rely on so-called Force Majeure clauses which enable both parties to walk away, recouping some expenses and removing the risk of legal action.

But brokers say such clauses vary and do not all include epidemics.

Unlike with cancellation insurance, the event organisers would not be able to use such clauses to claim for lost revenue such as ticket sales.

Premiums have also gone up by at least 50 per cent for policies excluding communicable disease, as competition falls.

Lloyd’s of London insurer Markel has stopped underwriting event cancellation insurance and others are expected to follow.

As countries move out of lockdown, matches are mostly being played behind closed doors and shown online.

This means the amounts being insured are lower due to the lack of spectators, with organisers no longer buying liability insurance against injury.

“This shift in how fans are seeing their sports means insurers are offering added cover for transmission failure or interruption for live-streamed games,’’ Leigh Ann Rossi, Chief Operating Officer of broker BWD Sports and Entertainment, said.

“Some TV contracts are so lucrative that the lost ticket sales don’t impact the budget as much,” Rossi said.


Edited By: Emmanuel Okara and Olawale Alabi) (NAN)

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Kwara gets new Director of Sports



Coach Ibrahim Alarape has been appointed as the 16th Director of Sports, Kwara State Sports Council.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that he replaces the out-going Director of Sports, Mallam Tunde Kazeem, who is officially bowing out of service on Wednesday (July 1).

NAN also reports that Coach Alarape, according to the appointment, will serve in acting capacity as from Monday, June 29.

Until his appointment, Alarape was the Head of Coaching, Training and Research, at the state Sports Council.

He was former Head of School Sports and Local Government Affairs, and was appointed as Acting Head of Coaching, Training and Research in 2017, and was substantiated late last year.

For the past three years, he had been acting as the Director of Sports whenever the out-going director was out of town.

The state Commissioner for Sports and Youth Development, Mrs Joana Kolo, presented the letter of appointment to Coach Alarape in her office on Tuesday.

Alarape, a former athlete like his predecessor, represented the state in various squash tournaments as a player, before graduating to become a coach in the sport.

He was Head of the state’s squash team for many years, winning laurels in both national and international competitions.

Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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Makeshift care center set up at indoor sports complex in Bangalore




Workers prepare to set up a makeshift care center for COVID-19 patients at an indoor sports complex, in Bangalore, India, June 28, 2020. (Str/Xinhua)


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City in NE China develops sports industry online




The COVID-19 outbreak has affected the sports industry worldwide to varying degrees. However, in the city of Qiqihar in Northeast China‘s Heilongjiang province, the internet provides new chances for the industry to develop.

Qiqihar is famous for ice hockey in China, with bright prospects for the development of winter sports.

“Hello everyone, I am Zhang Yanchang, deputy director of the Qiqihar Sports Bureau. Welcome everyone to the live broadcast room,” Zhang made the opening remarks on a business invitation meeting on a short video platform on the evening of April 27.

Ten guests, including officials from the Sports Bureau, experts in the sports industry, and entrepreneurs became anchors for the virtual meeting.

They each introduced their part to the viewers, either government policies, cooperation intentions, or advantages of their products. Qiqihar Sports Bureau signed project contracts with some enterprises during the live broadcast.

Matches of the Qiqihar men’s ice hockey team is broadcast online during the COVID-19 lockdown. (Xinhua)

Matches of the Qiqihar men’s ice hockey team is broadcast online during the COVID-19 lockdown. (Xinhua)

In recent years, Qiqihar City has vigorously developed the sports industry through the promotion of ice hockey and other sports. More and more local people participate in ice and snow sports, and there are more and more sports competitions in Qiqihar.

“We hope to find opportunities for cooperation through live broadcasts to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the sports industry,” Qiqihar Sports Bureau Director Tang Chaolong said.

The director also served as a salesman on the short video platform and recommended the products of Qiqihar sports manufacturing enterprises to viewers.

Tang Chaolong introduces products of local manufactures online. (Xinhua)

Tang Chaolong introduces products of local manufactures online. (Xinhua)

In the past few years, Qiqihar has hosted hundreds of international and domestic ice hockey tournaments every year. This summer’s games are a little special.

On June 10, the Qiqihar men’s ice hockey team, the champion of the Chinese National Winter Games, had an intra-team match behind closed doors. The game was broadcast live through a short video platform.

To meet the needs of more fans, the organizer then held two more games, and the total number of online views in the three games exceeded 70,000.

“Next, we will try to make the live broadcast a common practice during this special time,” Tang said.


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