The Minister of Youth and Sports Solomon Dalung has described his delegation’s visit to Rio, venue of the forthcoming Olympic Games as indispensable .
Dalung made the remark after a three-day visit of facilities in Rio to be used by Nigerian athletes during the games.
A five man delegation comprising the minister, President and Secretary General of the Nigeria Olympic Committee, Habu Gumel and Tunde Popoola, as well as the Director General of the National Sports Commission Alhassan Yakmut and the Director Federations and Elite Athletes Department Mrs Hauwa-Kulu Akinyemi had visited facilities and the games village where Nigerian athletes will be residing throughout the games.
According to the Minister, the visit was necessary to enable the ministry to plan ahead for the games.
“Nigeria will be taking part in just a few sports and the venues are scattered all over Rio. Our visit to the various venues, some of which are ninety percent ready, was very essential to enable us to plan for our athletes. What we saw gave us a first hand information on what to expect in terms of movement, arrivals, accreditation and distance between games venues and athletes village as well as mode of transportation”.
The delegation which was also scheduled for inspection of facilities with the Malaysian delegation visited the Riocentro Convention Centre which will host Badminton, table tennis and weightlifting events as well as the Carioca Arena 1&2 which will host basketball, judo and wrestling.
The delegation also visited the Maraca Stadium which will host the opening and closing ceremonies and football matches
and the Olympic Stadium for track and field events.
On the last day, there were presentations on NOC relations and services, sports entries, arrival and departure of athletes and officials, accommodation, ticketing, accreditation, hospitality House, medical services and dignitaries.
The Rio Olympic Games start from August 5 – 21 2016. More than 10,500 athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees, including Kosovo and South Sudan for the first time, will take part in the 31st Olympiad.
Nigeria will compete in athletics, canoeing, table tennis, men’s football, wrestling, power lifting and men’s basketball.