Cross River Central Senator Hailed Over Gov Otu Soccer Tourney 2024

Cross River Central Senator Hailed Over Gov Otu Soccer Tourney 2024

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Cross River State’s Commissioner for Sports Development, Agnes Atsu, has challenged politicians in the state to emulate the lawmaker representing Cross River Central senatorial district, Senator Eteng Williams, by coming out to sponsor any of the sporting competitions that will assist the state discover young talents who can represent Cross River in sporting activities.

The Commissioner made the during the inauguration of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) ahead of Prince Otu Cup 2024, a football tournament organised by the sports ministry and sponsored by Senator Williams, to fish out young talents in secondary schools across the 18 LGAs of the state.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, which took place on Tuesday at the VIP Lounge of U.J. Esuene Sports Stadium, Calabar, the commissioner charged Crossriverians in high places of authority to come out and invest in sports development in order to elevate the sector and tap its potential.

She said that sports being a capital-intensive and lucrative enterprise cannot be left in the hands of government alone, stressing that football known as ‘King of Sports’, can be a lucrative and productive venture if there is adequate investment in it.

“Eteng had always been a pillar of support for me, and continued to be so. His understanding of the political landscape is evident in his strategic focus on women and youths. The central senatorial district should recognise his timely and targeted contributions.

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“In 2016, I brought out 100 women for a programme, Eteng responded by helping us. I don’t want to take things for granted. Here again, he has come out to support me now that I am in need of support.

“I want to use this opportunity to tell politicians that when you help a woman or youths, you will go places because if they pray for you, you go places. With sports, you can walk through your aspirations.

“I am using this avenue to right now to let them know that if you want to fly, come to Sports Ministry and contribute your quota towards rebranding sports development on-going in the state, as government alone cannot do it.

“For those of them looking out for green field, Sports Ministry is here. I would like to charge you that having found your name among the committee members, go back and create ideas that would bring success.

“You can add colour, you can be creative. The state will help expose you to the entire 18 local government areas,” she stressed.

The Commissioner expressed confidence in the ability of the LOC members to organise a successful and vibrant tournament that would draw significant attention and participation.

In his remarks, Special Adviser to Governor Bassey Otu on Sports Development, Ekanem Ekpenyong, averred that the grassroots nature of the competition, which will kick off from September 16 to November 15, 2024, is a key strategy that would unearth talented young footballers across the
state.

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Ekpenyong hailed Senator Williams for his visionary initiative, which promises to benefit the youth beyond the lawmaker’s constituency.

In his address, a former chairman of Ikom local government area council, who is a member of the LOC, Ayiba Ojong, described Senator Williams as a dedicated sports enthusiast leveraging sporting events to further Governor Otu’s ‘People First’ mantra.

Also, secretary of the LOC, Sunny Udeh, assured the Commissioner of the committee’s preparedness and commitment towards coming up with results that would make the lawmaker and Governor Otu proud.

The LOC members include; Ekanem Ekpenyong (Chairman), Sunny Udeh (Secretary). Other members of the committee are Ayiba Ojong, Butum Ubi, Daniel Obo, and Pastor Ewa, among others.



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