By Alexander Johnson Adejoh
The Edo State Government has released guidelines for the delayed 20th National Sports Festival, tagged ‘Edo 2020 Games.
The games, which were postponed from last year due to the outbreak of coronavirus, are scheduled to open from April 2 to April 14 in adherence to Covid-19 protocols.
In a statement by the chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) and Deputy Governor of Edo State, Comrade Philip Shaibu, said all athletes/officials from the 35 states and FCT, participating in the Festival must take Covid-19 tests 72 hours before arrival for the tournament and also vaccinated at least 12 days before for the Games.
‘Athletes/officials are to present certificates and documentation of Covid-19 tests and vaccination before they can be admitted into the Games Villages in the state, while officials of the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) will arrive in Benin City four days to the commencement of the Festival, to monitor compliance with Covid-19 guidelines.
‘Also the torch of unity will arrive in Edo State on Saturday, April 3, and will go round the 18 Local Government Areas in the state before arriving at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium main bowl on Tuesday, April 6, where the Governor would light it up,’ It said.
In line with Covid-19 protocol, the number of athletes and officials expected to participate in the games have been reduced from 14,000 to 8,000 participants, while all the non-pharmaceutical measures to limit the spread of Covid-19 will be provided for by the State government at the various venues and camps.
The statement urged the general public to follow the activities of the Festival which would be streamed live across media platforms, including social platforms.
Meanwhile, the host government and the Ministry of Youth and Sports have agreed that Team Nigeria contingent for the Olympics would be camped in the state for preparation for the games, to take advantage of the world-class equipment and facilities in the state.