Japan Boosts Growth of Nigerian Sports

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As part of contribution to the technical growth of Nigerian Sports, the Japanese government dispatched a Japanese Assistant Coach for Women’s National Volleyball Team to Nigeria with the aim of training Nigerian volleyball coaches.

The volleyball coach, Mr. Mizuno, held refresher course and training sessions with Nigerian state head coaches from all the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Coaches of some University teams and other volleyball clubs were also part of the training.

All of the participants benefited technically from the knowledge and experience of the coach during the one week interactive programme.

The official closing ceremony was held on Monday at the National Institute for Sports, Package B, National Stadium Complex Abuja, and it was opened by the welcome speech of Engr. Habu Ahmed Gumel, President of the Nigeria Volleyball Federation.

In his remarks at the closing ceremony, the deputy head of mission of Japan, Mr. Masaya Otsuka said, “although this arrangement was put together through the friendly relationship between the President of the Nigeria Volleyball Federation, Engr. Habu Ahmed Gumel, and his Japanese counterpart, it generally falls within the Japanese Governments ‘Sports For Tomorrow’ program committed towards Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Through this program the Japanese government seeks to pursue a vibrant international cooperation and exchange through sports.”

“Volley ball is one of the popular sports in which Japan has progressed very well,” he added. “After winning the gold medal by the Japanese women’s National Team at the 1964 Olympic Games, which was hosted by Tokyo, the interest in Volley ball has continued to increase leading to two more Gold medals, Men’s team in 1972 Munich Olympics and Women’s team in 1976 Montreal Olympics.”

Mr Otsuka also noted the strength and successes of Nigeria in terms of sports.

“Nigeria is the biggest country in Africa in many aspects, and has been providing the lead for other African countries in sports, especially in the football event in which Nigeria have won several Gold medals at the world stage,” he said.

Otsuka, officially handed over 200 volley balls donated by the Japanese Volley Ball Association to the Nigerian Volley ball Federation at the ceremony.

The Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Sports, Christian Ohaa, who represented the Honourable Minister of Sports presented certificates to all the participants.

By: Justin Dayan

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