The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, has announced Lagos as the hosting state for the Nigerian Navy Games and would commission the Nigerian Navy Sports Complex in Navy Town, Lagos, during its forthcoming 12th Nigerian Navy Games 2022, scheduled to take place from 8-13 September, 2022.
Addressing Defense/Sports Reporters at a press conference ahead of the event, the Chief of Administration Naval Headquarters, Rear Admiral Jason Gbassa, said that the sports complex is well-equipped to a world standard, to encourage diverse sporting activities for mental and physical wellness among its personnel.
“The ultra- modern sports complex I equipped with an indoor sports hall, a gymnasium and swimming pool.
“The complex also has a football pitch with a standard pavilion, outdoor courts for handball, volleyball and basketball, as well as tracks for athletics.”
Gbassa also emphasised that the ultra-modern sports complex complements the navy’s tradition of total wellness required for “daily mental and physical routine for service ashore and at sea.”
According to o him: “The Navy recognises the importance of sports in personal development and the opportunity of the Navy Games to identify and develop talents that would represent the nation in both national and international competitions in the future.
Gbassa used the occasion to appreciate the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo, as well as past leadership of the Navy, for their efforts in ensuring the completion of the sports complex, aimed to serve as a hub for producing sports talents for the Navy and for the nation.
He, however, noted that besides the Navy Games, various Commands usually organised sporting events as well as participates in others round the year.
This, he said, was in addition to sponsoring competitions including the CNS National Open Swimming Championship and the Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria- organised CNS U-17 Football Championship.
For the records, the Nigerian Navy has to its credit in sports, several outstanding wins.
As explained by Gbassa, the Nigerian Navy, within seven months of establishing its Polo team, won trophies at the Nigerian Navy 66th Anniversary polo tournament and the TY Danjuma Cup, both in Port Harcourt. The team also came second at the Lagos International polo tournament.
The Nigerian Navy’s Admiralty Football Club is presently placed second in the Nation-wide League One Football Competition in Lagos State. Additionally, Nigerian Navy’s female volleyball team, CNS Spike’s, had the honour of representing the nation at the last African Women Volleyball Championship, which held in Tunisia in May 2022.
The navy proudly recalls that the first Nigerian Olympic medal (Bronze) was won by Nojim Maiyegun, Nigerian Navy personnel. WCPOPT1 Gilbert participated in the 1964 Olympic and 2nd All African Games as a member of the Nigerian boxing team and the late Commander Bellah (a hurdler) was a member of the Nigerian contingent to the Melbourne Commonwealth Games in Australia.
According to Gbassa, the Nigerian Navy remains proud of its consistent commitment to sporting activities both for wellness and for competitiveness.