The venue was the conference room of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) inside the National Stadium, Surulere in the commercial nerve centre of Nigeria and the occasion was the first press briefing of the newly-elected Nigeria Olympians Association (NOA).
NOA presided over by former Nigeria’s National Basketball Team Captain, Olumide Oyedeji, has hit the ground running in reeling out their programmes for 2019 to journalists.
Decked in their radiant T-shirt, the executives were represented by Oyedeji (President), Chioma Ajunwa (Treasurer), Lawrence Adegbehingbe (Secretary General), Bose Kaffo (Assistant Secretary), Sunday Mathiaus (Vice President 3), Juliana Akhere (Welfare Secretary) and Aminat Adeniyi (Financial Secretary).
An excited Olumide Oyedeji told journalists that the new executives was willing to impact the lives of past and present Olympians with laudable activities cum programmes that would be staged across the country.
He said NOA would be eager to focus on the welfare of Nigerian athletes both present and past with a bid to inspire them.
Speaking at the first executive meeting of the NOA board led by its President, Olumide Oyedeji, the body made up of current and past Olympians believes the welfare of athletes remains their priority.
“We are here as former athletes that have represented Nigeria at the Olympic Games and as a body we want t ensure that the welfare of our colleagues remains our priority in this board. We must also commend the former board led by Henry Amike for their efforts and we will continue from where they had stopped. We want to support the athletes and also inspire future champions. The idea of former athletes living in penury should not be heard of and that is why we will be giving serious attention to the welfare of Olympians and athletes in the country,” Oyedeji said.
The former national basketball team captain however, said they intend to compliment the efforts of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) as well as work with the Federal Ministry of Sports and national sports federations with the aim of building champions in various sports.
With several programmes put in place by NOA, members of the board – Chioma Ajunwa and Bose Kaffo believe the body is poised to change the fortune of sports with impactful programmes lined up throughout the year.
Aside from sporting programmes, several humanitarian projects would be embarked on with the aim of adding value to the society.
NOA is affiliated to the World Olympians Association (WOA) and Oyedeji believes they had already being invited to the 2019 World Olympians Forum holding in April in Switzerland.
Globally, there are 148 National Olympians Associations (NOAs) spread across all five continents. They organise events for Olympians and run projects that help their local communities. Projects based on the Olympic ideals laid down by Pierre de Coubertin.