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Lack of Fund May Bring National Sports Festival to Abrupt End Today

Lack of Fund May Bring National Sports Festival to Abrupt End Today

The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) of the Edo 2020 National Sports Festival has agreed to shut down the festival from 12 noon today (Thursday, April 8) for lack of funds.

According to a release credited to the project manager, media and communications, Edo 2020 Ebomhiana Musa, the federal government is yet to give any financial assistance in support of the festival, and the Edo State government is under an excruciating financial stress that it cannot continue to bankroll the fiesta.

Nigerian Sketch scooped that the Edo state government and officials of the federal ministry of sports have been in a marathon meeting since Wednesday, and that the issue has remained unresolved as of the time we publish this story.

The federal government has however said the festival will continue as planned, according to the assistant director of press, ministry of youth and sports development, Ramon Balogun.

Balogun issued a statement in which he said, “The Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has clarified that the 20th National Sports Festival, Edo 2020, is going on as planned with competitions going on as scheduled.

“The Ministry and the Main Organizing Committee for the festival are unaware of any plans or threat by the Edo State Government to shut down the sports festival as there has been no official meeting or communication that relayed such information.

“The Honorable Minister, Permanent Secretary and Directors are on ground in Benin City where the Festival is holding, and it is expected that the Edo State Government would formally invite the Ministry for a meeting should any urgency exist around the National Sports Festival or communicate officially with the Main Organizing Committee for the festival. The Ministry has no such communication.

“For the records, the Edo State government due to the cost implications of postponements occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic requested financial assistance from the Federal government through the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development.

“The Ministry has since been at work to secure the financial assistance which it believes is being processed. The MYSD and EDSG are determined to deliver a successful National Sports Festival.”

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