THE NIGERIA CRICKET FEDERATION SUCCESSFULLY CONDUCTED THE OFFICIAL LAUNCH OF THE ACCELERATED GROWTH PROGRAM IN ABUJA.
The Accelerated Growth Program which is a grassroots initiative by the Nigeria Cricket Federation seeks to introduce around 200,000 new kids into the sports annually. The 36 states of the Federation including the FCT will benefit from the program as field officers have been employed to run the program beginning with states that are least developed in Cricket.
The Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the Federation Prof. Yahaya Ukwenya expressed delight at the successful Launch of the program which is one of the key 5 imperatives of the development plan engaged upon by the Federation.
‘’The aim of the program is to accelerate the growth of Cricket in Nigeria at a faster pace than it has been done in the past and also taking into context the population of the country. The purpose is to see more children get into the sport, in so doing; they will imbibe some of the principles of the game which you can also call Spirit of Cricket which i believe is good for their development. It is important to understand that a child actively involved in sports is not likely to get into anti-social and criminal activities he said.”
A total of 14 schools (Private and Government) in Abuja and Niger State participated in the Launch with a total of 155 students registered both boys and girls. Plastic starter pack equipment was delivered to the schools present with that exercise expected to be replicated across the country.
You may recall that the Federation procured over 1,000 sets of beginners’ equipment during the first quarter of the year to aid this program. A new technology called the Geographic Information System (GIS) will also be deployed by the field officers to provide real time information that will enable the Federation track the spread and use of the equipment across the country.
Representing the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Ademu Ajayi, Deputy Director in the Federation Elite Athletes Department (FEAD) of the Ministry, heaped praised on the Federation for their continuous desire to develop the game in the country, recognizing Cricket as the best in development and administration among other sports in the Ministry. He further pledged on behalf of the Ministry that Cricket will continue to enjoy the support of the Mother body for all her activities.
Final activity of the Launching ceremony was the demonstration of the basic Bating, Bowling and Fielding techniques demonstrated to the students by the National Women’s Team
MUSA EHIZOJE BODIE
PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER (NCF)