President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan will today perform the traditional handing over of Team Nigerian athletes to the Nigeria Olympic Committee, NOC. The event will take place in a grand reception billed for Sheraton Hotels, Lagos.
Sports Minister, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi will lead the who-is-who in Nigerian Sports in presenting Team Nigeria to the President who in turn will hand over the team to the President of the Nigeria Olympic Committee, Engr Sani M. Ndanusa. NOC Scribe, Tunde Popoola said that the stage has been set for Team Nigeria to be officially handed over to the Olympic body before their departure to Surrey Camp in London on Sunday.
They are expected to put up at the Surrey facility to perfect finishing touches in preparations before storming the Olympic Village. “Invitations have been given out and we expect a grand send-forth and handing over of Team Nigeria to the Nigeria Olympic Committee. We have enjoyed a siamese relelationshipe with the National Sports Commission and we expect this relationship to translate into good medals at the Olympics”, Popoola said.
Director General of the NSC, Dr Patrick Ekeji who will serve as Chef de Mission of Team Nigeria with his deputy chef de Mission, Yakumut Alhassan would add colour to the event. Presidents of Sports Federations, Acting British High Commissioner, Mike Purves, Political and Press Secretary Hooman Nouruzi and Communication Manager, Wale Adebajo would be there to wish Team Nigeria well. Chief Solomon Ogba who led Team Nigeria to win the African Athletic championships in Porto Novo would also add colour to the event.
NOC president Ndanusa said that the compact nature of Team Nigeria would send shock waves as government has done so much more to place them in the front burner for the Olympics. “We’re going to compete with other countries. We are not going to participate. And with God, all things will be well”, he said.