The Benue State contingent to the just-concluded National Youths Games in Delta State, tagged Asaba 2023, will be returning home empty-handed from the sports fiesta without winning a medal.
Many people are curious why Benue didn’t win a medal at the games with the preparations and assurances given by sports officials prior to the event
Before the start of the youths games, Governor Hyacinth Alia had approved funds for the participation of Benue State contingent at the seventh edition of the games.
This was confirmed by the Commissioner for Sports, Youths and Creativity, Rt Hon Terkimbi Ikyange, during a visit to him by sports stakeholders in the state.
Hon Ikyange had said that with the approval for the release of funds for this year’s National Youth Games, Benue contingents will not only boost their preparations to fly the flag of the state at the sports fiesta but will work towards winning more laurels to justify the kind gesture of the governor.
Benue people are dumbfounded with the abysmal performance of the state’s contingents at this year’s edition of the sports festival.
The gravity of Benue underperformance at the yóuths game is underpinned by several factors.
Besides being one of the most populous states in the country, Benue is undergoing a demographic transition in the youth population.
These athletes alone don’t carry the burden of this failure in sports among the enthusiastic fans in the state.
This year’s games may have been treated as an occasion for excursion and gaining experience by both athletes and officials and so there may be no reason to blame only the athletes.