The week long activities of the 2019 International Youth week celebration in Cross River State reached its crescendo when state executive members of the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN) took part in a novelty football match against the Voluntary youth Organisation on Friday, August 9th 2019, as part of activities to mark the yearly event.
The friendly encounter which was staged at the training pitch of the UJ Esuene Stadium, Calabar, saw attendance and representation cut across the 18 Local Government Areas in the state; with the likes of former DG Primary Health Care Agency, CRS, Dr. Betta Edu, Comrade Coco-Bassey, Comrade Prince Ndiyo, Comrade Victor Bassey, Comrade Esege Mathew, as notable personalities who graced the event.
In what turned out to be a very interesting encounter the National Youth Council of Nigeria team defeated the Voluntary youth Organisation 3-0, showing class and quality in all department of the game from the blast of the whistle.
In an exclusive interview with www.9jabuzzer.com, Chairman of the National Youth Council of Nigeria, Cross River State chapter, Comrade Prince Ndiyo revealed that Sports tools is one of the tools to transform the mindset and attitude of the youths in the state.
“Today was designed for games, we decided to keep ourselves fit, significantly it was just to keep the young persons fit as we keep going along the way”.
“For instance what we did this morning, everyone’s mind was committed to what we were doing, before many will get home they will be tired and instead plan to do something useful for themselves, which is transformation attitudewe need to have the right mindset”.
“So we see sports and whatever we are doing to keep ourselves fit as part of the activities to celebrates young persons. You can see people celebrating, it was fun”.
The theme for this year’s celebration is “Education as a catalyst for community development”, and also speaking on such an incisive theme during the event, former Director-General of Primary Health Care Agency, CRS, Dr. Betta Edu stated it was timely and a rude awakening to all concerned stakeholders.
“I think basically its just to draw the attention of all key stakeholders to the fact that we don’t have a nation if we cannot invest in education. Its sad that today even in our country education is taking a back seat, its detrimental to the Nigerian youths, we are hopeful that the government of the day at all levels will put more emphasis on education”.
“Education does not necessarily only mean going to the university, there are so many other ways of getting educated and acquiring skills which can be useful to society. We hope that young people at all levels can be enticed and motivated to be part of this”.
She went further to speak on the novelty match, which she started was a means of unifying youths in the state on all front.
“Today’s event brought above more unity amongst young people, we should our energy to be more innovative and inventive, and we should our energy to improve the society and bond, support each other. Of course If we don’t do that, then we risk having a society where people will just go into all sort of vices, so we want redirect that energy into something more useful. Some young people who play football earn up to billions”.
The week long event which started on monday with a radio chat in stations in Calabar, gave way for a sanitation exercise on Tuesday in the city; on Wednesday there was a discussion forum across all 18 LGAs. Activities will continue on Saturday with an award night in Calabar, then thanksgiving service on Sunday.