On Saturday, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, carried out a light-up of the 2022 Nigeria Universities Games (NUGA) torch at the Sports Centre, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, amid a roar of cheers.
It is reported that the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the start on NUGA on the 26th of NUGA was marked with an exciting opening ceremony held at the Sports Village, which was the venue for hosts.
The ceremony also saw the parade of the universities that participated, while students from UNILAG Staff School UNILAG Staff School also performed some calisthenics and a dance class.
Other dignitaries, aside from Gbajabiamila, included Minister of Youths and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, during Gov. Babajide Sanwo Olu of Lagos State was represented by Sola Aiyepeku.
On hand for the event included The Managing Director at GTco, Segun Agbaje, Pro-Chancellor of UNILAG and Dr. Olanrewaju Tejuoso, Prof. Stephen Hamafyelto, and the Vice-Chancellor, UNILAG, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe.
In his welcome address, Gbajabiamila referred to sports as an effective tool to bring unity between different backgrounds and religious beliefs.
“We are blessed with people and women willing to display their talents as I did in times in the past when I was studying at UNILAG.
“About the 78 top universities in Europe and over 10,000 officials and athletes are present here as the sport is a universal language that many people across borders understand.
“In the coming days, we will see talent develop, and there is no doubt in my mind about the school that will win the top spot, but my biggest concern is the one in the second spot.
“Sure We are aware that Lagos does not take last’. Additionally, I have observed sports as a way to foster growth and unity that connects everyone,” he said.
Ogundipe, Vice-Chancellor Ogundipe said that as host, the Local Organising Committee (LOC) had put everything to guarantee a successful event.
“Today, we stand in the middle of the past to begin this 26th NUGA and the fourth one of its kind, organized by UNILAG.
“We have arrived here because UNILAG is a firm believer in the mission of NUGA to create an environment that is fertile to produce educated and well-rounded students that are prepared to provide reliable service to the country as well as the continent and the globe at large.
“That was the reason we did not spare any effort to prepare for this event. being diligent and working round the clock with our LOC and we worked tirelessly to mobilize financial, human, and material resources in order to ensure that this event was memorable,” he said.
Ogundipe said, “Our sports facilities are now upgraded to a world-class level so that our young athletes can show their talent without restriction.
“Arrangements were designed to ensure that everyone who participates in the games is at ease and that their experience is memorable,” he said.
The president of NUGA Professor. Hamafyelto remarked that 2022 NUGA is expected to be the biggest college sports event.
“I believe that the memories we share here will live long in our memory, and you’ll be able to believe me when I say that Lagos is the sixth-largest city in the globe, in terms of population, is famous for its youthful energy in business sports.
“Lagos is, for most of the participants, is a popular destination for business, tourism, as well as education,” He said.
The Pro-Chancellor, Dr. Tejuoso, encouraged the athletes to improve their mental capacity by using the sporting event.
In his positive message of goodwill, the Minister, Sunday Dare, encouraged youngsters to play the different games part of the all-university contest.
The sports for 2022 NUGA include football, athletics, hockey, badminton, cricket, chess, swimming, karate, judo handball, squash, tennis, taekwondo, tennis, basketball, volleyball, and boxing.