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NSF: FG dismisses plans to shutdown festival

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By Muhyideen Jimoh

The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has clarified that the 20th National Sports Festival, Edo 2020, is going as planned and that the competitions are going as planned.

Mr. Ramon Balogun, deputy director of the press at the ministry revealed it in a press release Thursday in Benin.

The insurance comes in the wake of a threat from the state government and the Festival LOC to stop the competition on Thursday if they do not get the promised financial assistance from the federal government.

The Nigeria News Agency (NAN) reports that an emergency meeting of the Local Festival Organizing Committee (LOC) headed by Deputy Governor of Edo, Philip Shaibu, was held on Wednesday where the threat was issued.

Musa Ebomhiana, project leader at the LOC’s media and communications subcommittee, said the decision was necessitated by the federal government’s refusal to keep a promise.

“You can quote me that we just finished an emergency LOC meeting (Wednesday), and as I speak to you, we have decided to close the festival at noon tomorrow (Thursday).

“The decision was made because the federal government reneged on its promise to help the state with funds.

“For this reason, we are closing the festival,” Ebomhiana said.

The ministry, however, insists that the festival continue as planned while the challenges raised are resolved.

“The ministry and the main organizing committee (MOC) of the festival are not aware of any plans or threats from the Edo government to shut down the sports festival because there has been no official meeting or communication. who relayed this information.

“The Honorable Minister, the Permanent Secretary and the Directors are on the ground in Benin City where the Festival is held.

“The government of Edo State is expected to formally invite the ministry to an emergency meeting around the national sports festival or to officially communicate with the main organizing committee (MOC) of the festival. .

“The ministry does not have such communication,” Balogun said.

The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development explained that funds intended to support the state government are still being processed and will be ready soon.

“Since then, the ministry has been working to secure the financial assistance it says is being processed.

“The MYSD and the EDSG are determined to organize a successful national sports festival,” added Balogun.

The festival which started on April 2 after many postponements is scheduled to end on April 14. (NOPE)

(NAN)

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