From Alfred Babs, Ilorin
The 20th edition of the Nigeria Polytechnic Games (NIPOGA) began on Saturday at the Kwara state Polytechnic, Ilorin with the state Governor, Abdulraman Abdulrazaq charging athletes and officials participating in the competition to demonstrate high level of sportsmanship.
The governor, while speaking at the opening ceremony explained that NIPOGA has proved to be a unifying factor and a tool for fostering national integration among polytechnics, monotechnics and colleges of technology throughout the federation.
Represented by his Deputy, Mr Kayode Alabi, the governor noted that from time immemorial, sports has helped in developing friendly relationship among nations, build courage, mental alertness, perseverance, discipline, fair play among others hence, the need for his administration’s commitment to sports development to maximally and meaningfully engage the youths.
Abdulrazaq therefore, expressed hope that this year’s edition of NIPOGA would provide robust opportunity for major stakeholders in the games to nurture the spirit of healthy rivalry, greater unity and social interaction that will move the sports sector to an enviable height.
The President, NIPOGA Council and Rector, Kwara State Polythenic, Ilorin, Dr Abdul-Jimoh Muhammed said the biennial sporting competition was being hosted by Kwara state Polytechnic for the second time after its first hosting in 1981.
Muhammed who appreciated the state government for supporting the institution and advised students and participants to exhibit the true spirit of sportsmanship.
He charged the host community to receive all their visiting teams with open arms.
The opening football match between the host institution (Kwara Polytechnic) and Federal Polytechnic, Oko, Anambra state ended in goalless draw.
A total of 51 Polytechnics and Monotechnics across the country are participating in the one week competition.