Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday congratulated the leadership and members of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) as they mark the celebration of the association’s 53rd anniversary.
Saraki, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, in Abuja, noted that SWAN has justified its existence through its numerous achievements and contribution towards sports development in the country.
He noted that the body has not only grown as a sports watchdog but has evolved over the years to become a critical stakeholder in effective sports administration in the country.
He urged SWAN to continue to be at the vanguard of advocacy to reposition the sports sector in the country and create awareness on the need for sports’ funding to be solely undertaken by the private sector while government should play the role of regulator in the sector.
“I am aware that SWAN is presently advocating for the establishment of a sports university in the country. I believe that this is the way to go as such a specialized institution when realized would help in no small measure to equip our sports men and women with cutting edge skills, orientation and international best practices that would help them excel both within and outside the shores of this country.
“The proposed Sports University would also help to build and equip a critical mass of sports administrators in the country in particular and the West African sub-region in general. This will no doubt raise the tempo of sporting activities in the continent and beyond,” he said.
The Senate President further urged SWAN to remain focused and dedicated to the ideals of nation building, adhere strictly to the ethics of the profession and help promote all sporting activities in the country to enable them gain the confidence and trust of corporate entities so as to attract sponsorship.