Posted by Victor Enyinnaya, Lagos | 2 December 2017 | 2,185 times
Bigwigs in Nigeria’s sporting circles will congregate at Airport Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos, this evening of Saturday, December 2, 2017, for the maiden edition of Nigeria’s biggest sports awards, the Nigerian Awards for Sporting Excellence (NASE).
The event, which starts at 5pm, will hold at the Osun Hall of the famous hotel. It will be chaired by one of Nigeria’s foremost sports entrepreneurs, Mr. Taye Ige, Chairman/CEO of HotSports Network and HS Media Group, which is presently building the biggest television production studio in Nigeria.
Speaking this morning in Lagos, Chairman of the Award Committee, Prince Isidore Oduah, listed active sports stars billed to receive awards at the occasion to include Super Eagles Skipper Mikel Obi; mesmerising winger Victor Moses; veteran striker Obafemi Martins; safe hands Carl Ikeme and Ikechukwu Ezenwa; goal queen Asisat Oshoala; and tennis sensation Aruna Quadri.
Also scheduled to be honoured, according to Oduah, are Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President Amaju Pinnick, his Basketball counterpart Ahmadu Musa Kida, and Super Eagles Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr. Others are President of Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) newcomers Go Round FC of Port Harcourt, Bro. Felix Obuah; Chairman of SCOA Plc, Chief Barr. Henry Agbamu; Chairman, El-Kanemi FC of Maiduguri, Alhaji Zannah Mala-Kakaje; Director of Sports, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Chief (Mrs.) Dili Onyedinma; National Chairman, Nigeria Football Supporters Club, Prince Vincent Okumagba; and Chairman of BJ Foundation FC of Benin City, Coach Douglas Idahosa.
Prince Oduah said that two public servants, namely, Senate Minority Leader, Chief Senator (Dr) Godswill Obot Akpabio (CON), and incumbent Governor or Borno State, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, are equally billed to be honoured for their contributions towards the development of sports in the country.
He said that completing the list are the senior national basketball side, D’Tigers, their female counterparts D’Tigress, reigning NPFL champions Plateau United, as well as oil giants Aiteo and Access Bank.
Prince Oduah, a former Executive Committee Member of the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) – now known as NFF – explained that NASE is aimed at recognising the sportsmen and women, as well as other stakeholders, as a way of appreciating their numerous contributions to sports development in the country in addition to their undaunted efforts to bring honour to their fatherland despite obvious shortcomings occasioned by lack of infrastructure and shoddy treatment, among others.
“The reason for this award is to lift the heroes and heroines who have been quickly forgotten by the same system they served to the best of their abilities. NASE was instituted to lift their spirits and further announce to them that their patriotic zeal that brought honour and world acclaim to the country won’t be in vain. It is a reward for athletes, exceptional administrators and other sports personalities that have developed infrastructures that continues to aid athletes to carry out their chosen careers without much hassle. In summary therefore, it is an award whose time has come,” Oduah declared.
Prince Oduah described NASE as an award which the winners would treasure each time they open their shelves while going down memory lane. “Whenever they look into their shelves, they see this lifetime award that they never solicited for but came strictly on merit. The joy of how it came would make them beat their chest and also nod their head in fulfillment. It is an honour that the country could not offer them but it came via a well-thought-out group of patriots’ initiative. It is an award that rekindles hope that, after all, their efforts were not in vain,” Oduah, who is the Financial Secretary of Association of Sports Veterans Nigeria, said.
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