- A member of Lagos state House of Assembly, Sanni Okanlawon, has described sport as a tool to develop people's mental ability
- The lawmaker made this known during the grand finale of his second tennis competition
- Okanlawon noted that he is interested in developing talents from the cradle to the stardom
Sanni Okanlawon, a member of the Lagos State House of Assembly representing Kosofe 1 constituency, has promised that he would continue to build economic capacity amidst the youths in his constituency.
Legit.ng reports that Okanlawon made the disclosure at the grand finale of the second edition of the Okla Table Tennis Academy competition held in Mende Town Hall, Kosofe Lagos on Saturday, April 3.
The lawmaker stressed that the competition is basically to develop talents from cradle to stardom, as well as to boost their economic base through the large sums of cash prizes splashed on eventual winners which would be good enough for them as business seed capitals to start off small scale enterprise.
"It has always been football all the time whereas there are other sports; indoor and outdoor sports that you can explore for the benefit of our people especially the young ones. So that is why I have chosen table tennis, which I have a passion for and to develop it in my constituency.
"The idea is to rechannel the energies of our youths into something meaningful and productive, nowadays nobody is providing that enabling environment our youths are out there engaging in criminalities and violence."
"Today we distributed a lot of cash prizes ranging from 200,000,150,000,100,000 naira to winners, in the cadet class 50,000,30000,20000 naira respectively it is a lot of money. With 200000 naira one can start up a small micro-enterprise or a pretty business with it, so that is the idea to empower economically and by the time we shall be holding the third phase of this tournament, this is the second phase in the series, I personally will put in more money.
The lawmaker, who doubles as the chairman House committee on education, also used the event to rally support for more involvement of well-meaning individuals in sports development, citing it as a veritable tool to rid the society of social menaces and vices.
"So that is why somebody must trigger action on everything that will bring peaceful coexistence amongst the people, everything that will engender economic prosperity and the responsibility and onus rest on people like us occupying public offices and any other good-spirited person or even corporate organizations.
" Table Tennis is also a game that can develop one's mental and physical alertness. As a growing adult,I am 56 years old on March 28th exercise had really kept me going, we need to exercise often so that we can keep fit and healthy.
The lawmaker also gave two brand new table tennis boards to the overall cadet grade winner who carted away gold-plated trophies from ward C and that of the senior cadre from ward D to further aid the grooming of talents in the various wards.
The chairman Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the Okla Table Tennis competition, Olanrewaju Oladunjoye, charged youths to latch on the opportunity afforded to develop their intricate vocation which could also bring them economic advancements.
Oladunjoye who is the supervisor for education in Kosofe local government reiterated the plans of the initiator to further bolster sporting activities especially table tennis in their locality and all over Lagos.
"It is an academy focused on tennis, for now, a sport we see as a veritable tool in empowering youths in our area, it is a stepping stone to greater heights we had two categories; cadets and the adults.
"We are going to have three categories come next edition, we started off thinking if we major on the professionals it will be like a disadvantage to the upcoming athletes, so we had to separate the pros from the semi-pros."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that the speaker of the Lagos state House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, asked Nigerians to be watchful and prayerful, especially at this critical time of the country's journey.
It was reported that the speaker made this admonition in his Easter message to citizens of the country, noting that the current period calls for an individual and collective resolve to be more security conscious, maintain peace, and support the government in its efforts to make Nigeria greater.