The new date for the earlier postponed 20th National Sports Festival (NSF) will be known on or before June 18, as well as the code of operations for the fiesta.
This was deduced from the ultimatum given to the 11-man COVID-19 committee inaugurated by the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to plan for a successful rescheduled Sports festival billed to hold in Benin city, Edo.
The competition was earlier scheduled to hold between March 22 and April 3, but was postponed indefinitely to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the country.
Sports Minister Sunday Dare in a virtual meeting on Wednesday ordered the newly-inaugurated committee to summit its reports within 30 days from the May 18th Extra-Ordinary National Council on Sports, which was also held virtually.
Dare urged the committee to map out a road plan that would ensure a successful hosting of the Festival before November this year.
“Ascertain the level of COVID-19 infrastructure put in place by the Edo State Government as well as requirements to manage any foreseeable crisis that may arise as a result of the organisation of the Festival” he said.
“Interface with all relevant Agencies to determine the COVID-19 infrastructure that must be put in place in order to host the games before November, 2020.
“Propose the date for the National Sports Festival. In accordance with the decision of the National Council on Sports, you are expected to submit the report of the Committee within the next 30 days from the date of the Extra Ordinary National Council on Sports,” Dare emphasized.
The Minister further tasked the committee to come up with a protocol that would ensure the safety of the athletes and officials ahead of the games.
“Prepare a code of operations that would guide the athletes, officials, spectators, LOC, MOC and other relevant stakeholders towards the successful organisation of the Festival.
“As you begin your assignment, I wish to assure you of the full weight of the sports loving people of Nigeria”
The 20th edition of the Sports Festival will hold majorly at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin.