Team Nigeria’s athletes to this year’s Africa Games in Morocco have been reminded about the ethics of patriotism and nationalism, which the ministry of youth and sports’ permanent secretary, Adeshola Olusade says must be the centre-point of their actions during the coming events.
Olusade stated as much ahead of the departure by Team Nigeria to Morocco on Friday, towards which he pointed out that the federal government will continue trying to meet all needs of the contingent.
He admitted during Network News on Radio Nigeria that non one can rule out the essence of monetary incentives in modern day sports, but stressed that financial gain must not be the central focus for any of the athletes in the various sporting events at Maroc 2019.
The permanent secretary disclosed that many of the 2019 contingent members have already been uplifted with grants and other welfare packages, which he said has stopped them from making any further agitations, but admitted that more still has to be done by the ministry.
Olusade stated: “We have continued trying to make them happy, and some of them have been assisted financially, which is why they are not complaining, but more will still be done before they go to Morocco.
“We cannot rule out the role money plays in motivating athletes to do well, especially in major competitions, but it must not be the essence of what they are thinking about or their total focus.
“It’s not just what they want from the government that they should be thinking of, but mostly of what they can do for their country.
“They have to let patriotism be at the back of their mind. While money is a major motivation for them, they must not forget that they also need to make their country proud with their performances.”