Solomon Dalung, Nigeria’s Sports Minister who spoke on Thursday in Benin during the extra-ordinary meeting of the National Council on Sports, disclosed that Nigeria won 700 medals under his reign.
The Sports Minister who lamented the experiences of some states sports directors during the 19th National Sports Festival in Abuja last December, called on state governors to change their attitude towards sports development in the country by making budgetary provisions for athletes to ease the sufferings of the athletes and officials. He further revealed that some athletes travelled to Abuja with the hope that money would be released for their contingents, but had to resort to an emergency fund-raiser before they could participate in the championship.
Solomon Dalung who recounted how Nigeria won 700 medals under his reign, said;
“In the past three years I took over as the sports administrator of the country, Nigeria has been able to win over 700 medals in various sporting competitions that we participated in and this is quite historic,” he said.
“I am still going back to the National Economic Council to address the governors on sports development in the country. If you bring high blood pressure testing machines here, most of the sports directors will have high blood pressure not because of their problems but because they had no money to take care of their athletes during competitions.
“During the Abuja sports festival, a sports director came with a contingent to compete in women sports; they didn’t have money and accommodation, they were sleeping under the staircase of the stadium and the team eventually won bronze,” he said.