It was yet another day of excitement as two teams representing different IDP camps slugged it out at a football championship organised by the Northeast Development Association (NEDC) on December 22, 2021.
The top-2 teams of Maiduguri Metropolitan Council (MMC) and Kukawa IDP camps played at the finals of the Peace Cup that started several weeks ago in Maiduguri.
The NEDC had organised the sports competitions as a means of engaging the teeming population of IDP youth across the 27 Local Government Areas of Borno with a view to keeping them away from all kinds of unlawful activities, and to promoting peace in the state.
The tournament which was initiated by Mustapha Sports Consult, a Maiduguri based sporting outfit was sponsored by NEDC as mean of discovering the potentials of the IDPs in different sporting activities.
During the finals that were well attended by various stakeholders, as well as a representation of the state government, the MMC football Club scored four (4) goals to defeat Kukawa Club who came second.
Earlier, at the semi-finals, the Gubio Club had secured the 3rd position in a game that ended in a penalty shootout when it scored 11 goals to defeat Askira Uba Club who had 10 goals.
Speaking at the end of the well-attended event, which was a first of its kind in many years, the Managing Director NEDC, Mohammed Alkali told journalists at the Elkanemi Sports Center that the purpose for which the completion was organised was well achieved.
He recalled that the sports tournament was kick-started on November 1, 2021, by Governor Babagana Zulum who launched the six weeks sporting activities for the IDP youths”.
He said 27 LGAs registered for football competition while 15 went for Badminton, 13 for basketball and 5 Volleyball.
“As you can see today, we have come to the end of the sport competitions with the final game played between MMC and Kukawa, while yesterday the third position was decided between Gubio and Askira Uba,” he said.
The MD said though only the three teams that made it to the finals were presented with trophies and medals, “however, all the teams are winners, and they are all going home with sets of Jessy, socks, balls, volleyball kits basketball kits and cash among others”.
“The essence of the sporting competitions is to encourage our youths and engage them in meaningful activities as they return to their respective communities and to promote sporting activities. We also had a training workshop for the coaches, and as time goes on, we are going replicate this competition across all the states in the Northeast,” he promised.
Borno state Governor, Babagana Zulum.who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Prof. Marte Hussaini promised the NEDC and organisers that state government would continue support the development of sports in the state.
A member of the Federal House of Representatives, from MMC, Abdulkadir Rahis, who also graced the event donated cash gifts to each of the two teams that played at the finals.