SWAN WEEK: Chairman Anambra Sports Development Commission, Chief Tony Oli (middle), hands over sets of jerseys, footballs and stockings to SWAN Anambra at the Awka Township Stadium, Dec 9, 2021
The Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN), Anambra Chaprter, has called on Gov Willie Obiano to deliver the first stage of the Awka Township Stadium, before the end of the year as a Christmas gift to the sporting community in the state, reports Jude Atupulazi.
The body of sports writers made the appeal during a tour of the stadium on Thursday as part of this year’s SWAN Week activities in the state.
Anthony Oji, Chairman of SWAN in Anambra who spoke on behalf of his colleagues, described the quality and extent of work at the stadium as impressive and satisfactory.
Oji said Obiano through the Anambra State Sports Development Commission (ASDC) had shown faith with the people of Anambra, especially the sports community, by giving the state a stadium that could rate among the best in the country.
He said a large chunk of the project had been executed, including a grand stand, changing rooms, Olympic standard 8-lane tartan tracks; while the hybrid football pitch had reached final stages.
Oji expressed the hope that the finals of the Anambra Academicals Cup for U13 and U17, as well as the finals of Tertiary Cup, would be played at the stadium before Christmas.
‘We are here and we have seen for ourselves. A lot has been put in place and more are on the way, it simply means that Anambra is taking sports seriously. We must say it is a promise fulfilled.
‘The contractor has been wonderful; we have seen so much finesse and attention to details which is why this is best of its kind in Nigeria today.
‘While we thank the governor for what has happened here, we want to appeal to him to complete this first stage of the stadium project as a Christmas Gift to the Anambra sporting Community,’ Oji said.
Oji who harped on the need to integrate the place of the media in the project by providing a press gallery, urged the government to consider allocating a parcel of land to SWAN within the stadium complex for its secretariat.
In his response, Tony Oli, chairman of Anambra State Sports Development Commission, ASDC said Anambra was interested in sports development and was determined to deliver the first phase of the project before the end of the year.
Oli said the idea of the stadium was to ensure that athletes in Anambra had a place for any type of game, while he assured that the football pitch, which was at the stage of laying the hybrid pitch, would be completed and delivered.
He commended SWAN for their partnership role in the Anambra sports sector and promised to positively consider the requests of the association.
The SWAN Week was rounded off last Friday with a gala night at La Cruz Hotel, Awka.