The Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the 24th Nigerian Universities Games Associations (NUGA) Games on Wednesday said that over 6,000 athletes and officials would participate in the competition.
The Games are scheduled to hold at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun, from Feb. 12 to Feb. 22.
Prof. Bayo Omole, the Chairman of the LOC, said in Ile-Ife that preparations were in top gear to host participants from universities across the country.
“Apart from the already existing facilities, others like an all-purpose pitch with pavilion, eight tennis courts, one cricket oval with a pavilion and a hockey field have been completed.
“A handball court, an all-purpose gymnasium with one tennis court, four badminton courts and a basketball court have been renovated and upgraded to international standard,’’ the chairman said.
He said the LOC had also renovated the Mytha Olympic-size swimming pool in the institution “which has been certified ready by the international swimming body (FINA).
Omole, a professor of architecture, said that with the quality of facilities in place, the LOC expected the competition to be of high standard.
According to him, OAU has invested heavily in its sports complex with the aim of hosting a modern NUGA Games.
The chairman said the facilities in place would offer the athletes the opportunity to excel in their individual events.
Omole said that after the competition, the university in general would have better facilities to use, adding that it would increase the enthusiasm for sports in the institution.
He said that students of the institution would go on break for the hostels to be free to accommodate the delegations from other universities.
The chairman said that adequate security measures had been put in place to ensure the safety of lives and property of the participants.
He said that the arrangements had also been made to see to the free flow of traffic within and outside the institution during the period.
Omole urged the participants and visitors to the institution to do things in the spirit of friendship and make the event hitch-free.
The University of Ife now OAU, hosted the third edition of the biennial NUGA Games in 1970.
Today, there are 36 Nigerian universities as statutory members of the NUGA General Assembly.
Also, the number of sports at the NUGA meets has increased to 15 and includes track and field, badminton, basketball, chess, cricket, handball, judo, soccer and hockey.
Others are football, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis and volleyball. (NAN)