Lagos Party: Fashola Invites Nigerians To Lagos

Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola has sent out invitation to Nigerians to be part of the closing ceremony of the 18th National Sports Festival this evening at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere, Lagos, with the promise of a magnificent show.

Lagos has done well in the hosting of the games, providing a level-playing field, with true winners emerging in most of the events. Cheating was not as pronounced as it was in some past festivals.

Despite being on home soil, athletes representing Lagos did not intimidate their opponents; neither did they cheat; promoting the spirit of fair play. They deservedly ended up as third on the medals table and lived up to expectation.

Pundits say it is their best outing in the past five games and it is not unconnected with the government’s efforts at promoting sports development in the state.

After hosting a memorable event, Lagos wants to cap their efforts with a classic closing ceremony that will be full of entertainment. Musicians and comedians entertained in different relaxation centres during the games as there were many shows even at the venues. The well attended events made alive by fan clubs made the atmosphere at venues exciting. The excitement continues tonight at the closing ceremony.

Delta State leaves Lagos as title holders of this year’s games, with their emergence as the top team making them the best state in sports in the recent times. They have won five out of the last seven games, losing to Edo and Rivers when those states hosted the games. Delta won in Bauchi 2000, Edo won in Edo in 2002, Delta returned to their winning streak in Abuja in 2004 and Abeokuta in 2006.

They also won in the Kaduna games that had to be postponed two times before losing to Rivers in Rivers. Now, they are back as winners in Lagos, a state that won the games consecutively at Markurdi ’96 and Imo ’98. The plunge in Lagos set in after then. But Fashola has launched a programme to revive sports and the march is on.

As Eko 2012 ends today, two athletes will be in the minds of many who saw them compete. They are the stars of the games. Kingsley Forcados and his elder brother, Otobodo Owanren as at Friday had won 12 gold medals. Each of them had won four individual and two team gold medals.