By Sumaila Ogbaje
A total of 2,000 athletes from 42 countries will participate in the third edition of the African Military Games to be hosted by Nigeria in Nov. 2024.
AVM Abidemi Marquis, Director of Sports, Defence Headquarters, made this known while briefing newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja, on the preparations for the games.
“The aim of African military games 2024 is to afford African countries the opportunity to interact with one another towards enhancing the good historical collaborative efforts and working relationship built and enjoyed over the years.
“The theme for this game is ‘Enhancing Military Cooperation in Africa through sports’.”
He said that the games has been tentatively slated to hold from Nov. 6 to Nov. 15, 2024.
Marquis said the military athletes will seek for laurels in 19 sporting events.
“A total number of 2000 military athletes across African countries are expected to participate in the championship.
“The Grand Patron for the African Military Games 2024 is the President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, His Excellency President Bola Tinubu,
“The patron is the Minister of Defence, while the Chief Host is the Chief of Defence Staff, and the co-hosts are the service Chiefs.
“The sponsors for this sporting events are the Ministry of Defence, Defence Headquarters, Services Headquarters, captains of industries, agencies and organisations,” he added.
Marquis said that Innoson Motors has donated a car as one of the star prizes to be won.
On his part, the President, Organisation of Military Sports in Africa (OSMA), Maj.-Gen. Maikano Abdullahi, said OSMA gave Nigeria the hosting right about 20 years ago but the games could not take place.
He said that the games was revived following the approval given by the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Christopher Musa.
Abdullahi who also doubles as the Vice President, International Military Sports Council, said the games would hold at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium and some military sport facilities in Abuja.
“There will be a General Assembly here in Nigeria before the games, and the Chief Delegate has already sent a primary invitation information to all the 54 African countries.
“They are all aware that we are going to have a general assembly here in Nigeria in Feb. 2024 to give us opportunity to go round and see the facilities we have in our stadium.
“It will also afford us to intermingle and enhance relationship between the Nigerian military authorities and the chief delegate,” he added.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the maiden edition of the games was held in Kenya in April 2002, during which 1,562 athletes from 32 countries competed in 11 sporting events. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Kevin Okunzuwa/Maharazu Ahmed