LifeHacks: Poor State of Sports Development In Nigeria

In more developed countries Sports is celebrated, Sportsmen are revered and talented young adults are encouraged to participate actively in sports. Over there you may get to see indigent students who are actually surviving on scholarships specially termed ‘sports scholarships’ which allows you to go to school for free while perfecting the special talent God has given to you, not everybody can finish a 100m track in less than 11 seconds and definitely not everyone can make four baskets out of four without proper practice but you can do all these with your eyes closed, that is something special that God has given to you, it is supposed to be your advantage in a crowd, that which sets you apart from all else and should not be something you do just to pass away time, this fact is totally understood in developed countries but the reverse seems to be the case over here, while you are still wondering just how perfect life is abroad let me bring you back to the reality we have here. We live in a developing country where nobody really cares about your extra curricular ability. If you are not the best student in your school I doubt anybody would remember you, not that it necessarily means that the student with the beat grade is the best student after all but that is what we practice here. Sports is almost totally relegated to the background in Nigeria, imagine a student who has to go to school from 8am to 4pm each day of the week, when will he be able to horn his skills in other areas of life? When he is already into his 30s? The country we live in is arranged in such a way that you cannot do anything once you start going to school and the possibility of achieving anything is reduced whenever you decide to leave school to further your other talent. Is it not possible that a young boy who is able to build a tricycle without really having a proper tertiary education can actually build components of a vehicle when he is trained properly? Why is it that in our country we do not have means of motivating gifted individuals? Let us bring this back to sports which is our topic today. If you are expecting any scholarship because you are a gifted sportsman then think again, nobody cares, really nobody does. We used to believe when we were kids that participating in sports would be our way out of this hardship but when we got older and discovered that there is actually no way for you to showcase your skills you start reclining back to the believe that education is the only way out. What exactly is the work of our ministries specifically the Ministry for Sports and youth empowerment? Well if you ask me I would probably tell you that all they do is collect fat salaries as well as allocations meant for development of sports, so where does that leave our youth? If you are not super talented and lucky you may never get noticed. So next time that you see that old colleague of yours who used to be as fast as the wind when you were small but right now he is struggling do not look down on him, he is just unfortunate that he is a Nigerian. What can we do about all these? We need to stand up for what is ours. We need to overcome this apathy we have towards the running of our country, if the executive passes a budget then it is our budget not their budget and we need to make sure that it is used for what it was meant for. That starts from fighting for what is ours, people who have a stand in the society ought to fight for the less fortunate ones. Moreover all these politicians who give out bags of rice during campaigns why not channel the money into unearthing sports talent in their local? Football isn’t the only sport in the world, the top 19 richest sportsmen only contains 4 footballers so because I can run does not make me any less that a talented footballer. If various sports related talent hunts can be organized in localities all across our countries then these kids will get noticed and we can better their lives, remember that the African system is made up of tightly knit extended families, if your cousin is making millions as a sportsman then you for sure with benefit from that, so why eat maybe just a bag of rice today when you can get millions a few years later? These are the type of things we should be asking of our politicians, not rice and other intangible materials. If we can stand up for what is right then we will benefit totally from it.

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