From: TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt Hundreds of youths in Rivers State yesterday, staged a peaceful protest in Port Harcourt, condemning the activities of some operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the state police command. Protesting on the platform of Niger Delta Non-Violence Youth Leaders Assembly (NDNYLA), they marched through some major streets in…
… As members install new executive
By Tessy Igomu
Adejumo Tennis and Sport Development Club has called for the active engagement of youths in sporting activities to engender grassroots sports rebirth.
The new president of the club, Alhaji Sanni Adegboyega, made the call during the send-off and inauguration of the organisation’s new executive. He said the move would help reduce negative societal vices usually pioneered by unemployed youths.
The club, which boasts of a variety of sporting facilities such as lawn tennis, squash, badminton, table tennis, snooker and pool games as well as a number of other in-door games, is located at Oke-Afa in the Ejigbo area of Lagos.
The transfer of leadership to the new executive, which was done amid encomiums, was graced by dignitaries from various parts of the country.
Outgoing president of the club, Mr. Olusegun Sanni, said Nigeria should endeavour to promote sporting activities, because, aside from its proven positive health benefits, sport could also go a long way to improve the country.
Sanni, who spoke said after handing over the paraphernalia of office to his successor, described the Adejuwo Tennis and Sport Development Club as a recreational facility where members come to exercise, burn off stress, socialise and fraternise.
Sanni explained that the club executives were passionate and committed to promoting the ideals of the organisation.
Describing his tenure as unexpectedly long due to some unforeseen challenges, he thanked God for his infinite mercy in the last couple of years. He also thanked his executive members for making his journey with them worth the while.
“The Ojo Baba court ruling and the subsequent closure and occupation of the club premises were part of the challenges we faced. Thank God this has been resolved by the trustees. This notwithstanding, we can beat our chest and humbly say that we might not have done exceptionally well, but we have, by the grace of God Almighty, performed well to the best of our ability in the face of all the challenges. We need to step down to allow new hands with new ideas continue from where we stopped, for positive progress and greater development of the club,” he said.
Highlighting some activities of the club in the past year, Sanni said the club carried out a road show in its drive to increase membership, adding that the move proved successful as the organisation was blessed with wonderful, active members. He said the new members, respectively, have added value to the club.
The outgoing president also extolled the virtues of some late members, namely Coach Obe, Mama Precious and Mr. Clement Adegbite, a cleric. He also prayed that the club would have no cause to lose or mourn the untimely demise of any member.
On projects executed in his tenure, Sanni said, with the assistance of members through donations and tremendous human efforts, the club successfully carried out the following: painting of the club premises, renovation of three tennis courts, replacement and repair of floodlights and security lights. Others, he said, were tiling and renovation of restrooms, installation of inner gate fence; provision of canopy, snooker board, repair of table tennis board, donation of chairs, chess board and dart board, among others.
He said, “The club also had the Alhaji Adegboyega Sanni Ladder Tournament and it was a resounding success that culminated in the present club ladder ranking. We also successfully hosted the FAAN invitational tournament, which also led to our being invited for the multi-club memorial tournament at FAAN Club. Our participation in the tournament served as an eye-opener, as it exposed areas where we were in dire need of improvement.”
The outgoing chairman noted that there were challenges, such as renovation of three courts including the squash court, and setting up a gym, among other important projects that the incoming executives would need to expedite action on. He also wished the new leadership God’s blessing and guidance.
The new club president, in his acceptance speech, eulogised members for showing unusual commitment to the affairs of the club, especially in the peak of challenges that threatened the club’s existence.
Speaking extensively on the contributions of sporting activities to nation building, he noted that sports had over the years ensured that Nigeria remained relevant globally. He also called on government, organisations and well-meaning individuals in the country to collaborate and get the youths actively involved in sports, so that they would shun crime and criminality.
“Sports should be for everyone and should also be used as a tool for nation building. Sporting activities at the local level will help the youths to positively channel their energy, which some of them channel towards crime. Sports should be at the grassroots and for all communities,” Sanni said.
Member of the Lagos House of Assembly representing Oshodi-Isolo Constituency, Hon. Jude Idumogu, who was among dignitaries at the event, also called on individuals to partner with the federal government in sports.