Cross River State Sports Development Holds Strategic Partnership Meeting

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CalabarThe State Commissioner for Sports Development, Hon. Agness Atsu, recently convened a strategic partnership meeting for sports development in Cross River State. This meeting gathered Commissioners and top political appointees from key Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) related to sports development in the state NEGROIDHAVEN has confirmed.

The focus of the meeting was to build strategic partnerships, identify areas requiring development, and highlight the importance of grassroots sports development. The latter was underscored as fundamental to nurturing professional talent across various sporting disciplines.

Cross section of Commissioners in attendance
Commissioner for Finance Mr Mike Odere making a point during the meeting .
Sports Development Consultant Dr MacFarlane Ejah addressing the Meeting on fundamental issues that needs to be done to move Sports forward

The Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Mike Odere, acknowledged the historical significance of sports in Cross River. He emphasized the necessity for enhanced service delivery across all MDAs linked to sports to rejuvenate the state’s sports sector. Mr. Odere urged all participants to take sports seriously and prioritize key issues essential for sports development in the state.

In her presentation, the Commissioner for Sports Development, Hon. Agnes Atsu, provided an extensive overview of activities conducted since assuming office. She highlighted her findings within the sports ministry and emphasized the importance of the meeting in promoting synergy and collaboration with relevant ministries. The objective is to reignite the state’s sports sector and restore it to its former glory.

Dr. MacFarlane Ejah, a Sports Development Consultant, identified challenges within the sports ministry. He outlined essential projects designed to reinstate the state’s leadership position in sports. These initiatives include the rebranding of top football teams, Rovers and Pelican Stars football clubs, establishing collaborations with critical stakeholders, developing income-generating aspects of sports, organizing secondary school competitions and local government area games, among others. These projects aim to redevelop sports in the state and beyond. Dr. Ejah also mentioned efforts towards developing a state-specific sports policy, creating an enabling environment for private sector investment.

Barr. Ekpenyong Akiba, the Special Adviser on General Duties, emphasized the need to prioritize quick wins from the meeting. These quick wins should receive immediate attention and be translated into actionable stages to revitalize the state’s sports sector.

Furthermore, the Commissioner for Youth Development, Barr. Ijom Ukam, and the Commissioner for Wealth Creation and Employment, Mr. Patrick Egbede, highlighted the importance of a policy framework, the income-generating aspect of sports, and active youth participation. They stressed that an active sporting community would create employment opportunities for the people of Cross River State.

Participants from various ministries and departments recognized the significance of translating the governor’s vision and mandate into tangible reality. They pledged their commitment to working together to achieve the common goal of restoring Cross River State’s sports sector to its former glory.

To ensure the success of the strategic partnership meeting, a committee was established. The committee was inaugurated by the Commissioner for Sports Development, Hon. Agnes Atsu, on Monday, October 16, 2023.