20th NSF: Lagos going to Edo with best, not numbers, as team Lagos begin close camp.

After months of rigorous Training by the Coaching and Technical Teams of various Sports Associations in preparation for the rescheduled 20th National Sports Festival (NSF) tagged EDO 2020 holding from 14-28 February 2021 in Benin, Edo State,the Trainings in the Open Camp has dovetailed into Close Camp of Athletes.

After months of rigorous Training by the Coaching and Technical Teams of various Sports Associations in preparation for the rescheduled 20th National Sports Festival (NSF) tagged EDO 2020 holding from 14-28 February 2021 in Benin, Edo State,the Trainings in the Open Camp has dovetailed into Close Camp of Athletes.

The Close Camp, which will end on 13th February before the Contingent depart for Edo State same day.

The Venue of the Close Camp is the Anglican House, Bariga, Lagos.

The Director General, Lagos State Sports Commission, Oluwatoyin Gafaar, prior to the Close Camp had held Zoom Meetings with the Sports Association Chairmen, Athletes and Sports Coordinators, Coaches and Sports Association Secretaries on different occasions where he made it clear that Lagos State will attend the National Sports Festival only with its Best Athletes.

“We are going to the Sports Festival with fit and prepared Athletes who are ready to represent Lagos State. These Athletes need to work extra hard to get back to their fitness before the festival,” said Gafaar.

“We are concentrating on Sports in which we have comparative advantages, and our best Athletes are those to be camped. It is not going to be jamboree,” he said.

The Director General disclosed that all Athletes selected to represent Lagos State at the forthcoming 20th National Sports Festival are to sign Code of Conduct forms, while their Parents would have to sign Indemnity on behalf of the athletes.

He urged all Coaches, Coordinators and Sport Association Secretaries to work together for the success of the Open and Close Camp, while assuring that the Management of Lagos State Sports Commission will compliment this by ensuring that all necessary logistics needed for the Campings are available.

“We need a ‘United Force’ for us to have a successful National Sports Festival Project this year,” the Director General concluded.

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The Commander, U.S. Africa Command, U General Stephen Townsend, wrapped up a three-day West African visit February 22-25, 2021, with a stopover in Nigeria to meet with the nation’s leaders and further the long-standing partnership and security cooperation between the two countries.

A press statement by the Embassy on Friday, said: “During the visit, Townsend met with the Nigerian President’s Chief of Staff, Ibrahim Gambari, and National Security Adviser, Babagan Monguno, to discuss regional security issues and to express the command’s gratitude for the assistance provided during a hostage rescue operation last year.

“When we asked for their help, the Nigerian government answered the call. Our hostage recovery mission in October would have been impossible without their support.

“They quickly provided assistance that helped the U.S. military to save an American life. That is a strong example of our partnership with Nigeria.”

Townsend also met with senior military officials, including the Minister of Defence, Bashir Salihi Magash, and the Chief of Defence Staff, General Leo Irabor, to talk about on-going cooperation in the region and greater maritime security and threat mitigation.

Nigeria is a key partner in countering violent extremist organizations throughout the Lake Chad Basin.

Townsend said furthermore: “The bilateral relationship between Nigeria and the U.S. is built on several pillars including security cooperation.

“U.S. Africa Command will do our part to advance the security cooperation pillar, so that Nigerians can enjoy the more secure future they all deserve.”

As close partners, the U.S. and Nigeria have worked at ensuring the collaborative relationship continues to grow to include a commitment to interoperability. Nigeria purchased 12 A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft, which will be delivered later this year.

“Nigeria’s purchase of A-29 Super Tucano aircraft is another example of their commitment to interoperability and security in the region,” he added. “Our economic relationship with Nigeria is already strong, and we look forward to the continued strengthening of security relationships. Nigeria’s leaders understand the importance of a collaborative approach to ensuring stability in West Africa and partnering on areas of mutual interest.”

The Commander also met with the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard.

Leonard said: “General Townsend’s visit to Nigeria demonstrates the strategic importance the United States places on our bilateral relationship with Nigeria.

“Our security cooperation partnership with Nigeria’s military will strengthen the country’s capabilities to secure land and sea borders, enhance overall security, and combat terrorism in the North East.”

As part of the visit, Townsend participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Nigeria Military National Cemetery to honour those who have given their lives in the service of their nation.

During the visit, the delegation expressed their condolences for the seven service men killed in the crash of a Nigerian Air Force aircraft in Abuja.