The First Lady of Kwara State, Ambassador Professor (Mrs) Olufolake AbdulRazaq has pledged to continue to support all efforts at empowering the youth through sports, and ever ready to partner relevant individuals and corporate organisations at achieving the development of sports.
The First Lady, who was represented by the Executive Chairman of the Kwara State Sports Commission, Mallam Bola Magaji stated this during the closing ceremony of the 4th edition of Kwara First Lady, Ambassador Professor (Mrs) Olufolake AbdulRazaq U-14 table tennis championship, which was concluded at Munirat Agbeke Hall and Suites, Bode Saadu, Moro Local Government Area of Kwara State, on Thursday November 23, 2023..
Over 60 ping pongers, both male and female, from the 16 Local Government Areas of the state participated in the three-day competition tagged “Mummy Olufolake Catch them young, Moro 2023”.
The grassroots table tennis development initiative, instituted in honour of the First Lady of Kwara state is being organized by Grassroots Sports Association, also known as Adebay Sports International, under the Chairmanship of Prince Dare Omowumi Adebayo.
It was organised in conjunction with the Office of the First Lady, Kwara state, in affiliation with the State Sports Commission, and supported by the Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Kwara State chapter.
While delivering his speech, the Chief Coordinator, Prince Adebayo extended his heartfelt appreciation to Her Excellency, the First Lady, Ambassador Professor Olufolake Abdulrazaq, for her unwavering moral and financial support. He congratulated her on her significant contribution to the development of humanity.
“You would all agree with me that Mummy Olufolake Catch Them Young 2021 and 2022 editions inaugurated 16 standard table tennis board to each of the16 Local Government Council, and that has no doubt, registered the First Lady’s name in the Guinness Book of record, as the wife of the Chief Executive of the state, since the creation of Kwara State in May 1967, to achieve that feat.
“Going down memory lane, our journey began like a child’s play, but today, through the sponsorship of this tournament, we have uncovered talents that are proudly worthy in representing our dear state at national and international platforms.
“The championship has become a vital platform for nurturing young talents in table tennis across all Local Government Areas, and a.complementary effort, to the state government’s plans.
“Our deepest gratitude goes to the Governor of Kwara State, Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq and all the 16 Local Governments TIC Chairmen under the able leadership of Prince Jide Ashonibare (The ALGON Chairman, Kwara State Chapter) for their invaluable maximum moral and financial supports.
“Special acknowledgment is due to the Commissioner, Permanent Secretary and the Director, Ministry of Local Government, Chieftaincy Affairs and Community Development and the Kwara State Sports Commission, particularly the Executive Chairman, Mallam Bola Magaji and Director of Sports Mallam Ibrahim Oladele Bako, for their substantial technical supports, ensuring the success of the programme.
Prince Adebayo equally commended Mrs. Oluwakemi Akinbowale Abiola, Quality Control Manager at SAM Pharmacitical Company, Ilorin for supporting the initiative, as well as.the host Local Government, Moro, adding that their supports has been integral to the success of the competition.
“In line with Governor AbdulRazaq’s Policy Trust, we remain committed to Grassroots Sports Development”, he added.
In the Girls Singles event, Ismail Mudirakat from Ilorin East defeated Adeoti Ayomide 2-1 to win the trophy, while in tbe Boys Singles, Abdulsalam Yusuf of Ifelodun Local Government emerged as champions after beating Bamgbola Stephen of Isin Local Government 2-1. In the Mixed Doubles, the pair of John Adefila and Ayomide Adeoti of Oke-Ero smiled home with the trophy.