Some sports stakeholders in Ondo State on Thursday called for more investment in grassroots sports development programmes by government and private companies.
They made the call during the closing ceremony of the Sunday Olajide School Sports Competition at the Ondo State Sports Complex in Akure.
Dele Ajayi, the Ondo State Football Association Chairman, said it was important to help discover talents not only in football but also in other sports.
Ajayi hailed the sponsor of the programme, Hon. Sunday Olajide, for deeming it fit to return sports to its lost glory in the secondary schools.
The FA chairman urged government at all levels to continue to support and project sports at the grassroots level for coaches to have talents to select from during competitions.
Also speaking, Malachi Coker, a member of Ondo State House of Assembly, representing Ilaje Constituency II, hailed the sponsor of the event for his focus on sports.
Coker expressed satisfaction with the level of participation of secondary school students in the sports events.
He urged coaches present at the event not to allow talents discovered during the event to go untapped.
In the football event, St. Daniels Secondary School emerged winners after defeating Akure High School 2-0 in the final.
In the boys’ 100m final, Owoeye Sunday and Ossai Mesharck of Aquinas College emerged first and second respectively, while Rafiu Jimoh of United C.A.C Secondary School came third.
In the girls’ 100m final, Adedunke Ayodele emerged first while Mary Ogunyinka came second, both of United C.A.C, just as Toyosi Ayeyemi of Fiwasaye Girls Secondary School took the third position.
In the girls’ relay event, United C.A.C. came first with Fiwasaye coming second while Omooluorogbo High School emerged third.
In the boys’ relay, Aquinas College came first while Oyemekun Grammar School came second, with Akure Secondary Community Grammar School coming third.
Speaking later, the programme’s sponsor, Sunday Olajide, said he bankrolled the event as a way of giving back to the community.
The member of Ondo State House of Assembly, representing Akure Constituency II, gave assurance that he would continue to give back to the community through sports community-driven projects.