The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Dame Pauline Tallen has presented award of excellence to the Association of Former Female Athletes of Nigeria, (AFFAN).
The Minister presented the award in Abuja on Wednesday at a stakeholders engagement and policy dialogue dinner in collaboration with the Research and Project Center.
The National President, Association of Former Female Athletes of Nigeria, (AFFAN), Dr. Esther Aluko received the award on behalf of the association.
Dr. Aluko, in an interview with newsmen expressed delight, saying it is a thing of joy having received the minister’s award.
“I am so excited and I’m sort of words. It means when you are working so hard, someone is watching you. It is a thing of joy to be honoured in this way and we really want to thank the Honourable Minister of Women Affairs for this recognition of AFFAN.” The AFFAN President said.
Answering questions on the the association’s line up of programmes for Nigerians especially at the grassroot, Dr. Aluko said AFFAN is currently working towards getting athletes to Asaba, Delta State to serve as a frontier to development of Netball in Nigeria.
“We constructed the first netball court in the FCT. We organised the first netball competition in FCT and some of our members are parts of the Nigerian Netball Federation and the Council of Sports have successfully proven netball to be social sport during the festival”,
“We have teams that were preparing right now that will go for the demonstration sports.” The AFFAN President, stated.
While fielding questions from Journalists, the Vice President, Association of Former Female Athletes of Nigeria, AFFAN, Air Commodore Rahinatu Garba, Rtd, said AFFAN is set to give back to the society and impart in the younger athletes to be role model.
“Netball was played in Nigeria in the seventies after basketball introduction in the country. We took it upon ourselves as athletes to commit our resources, our time and everything to get at least two teams of netballers and we have been training them for the past six months unto about a month ago that we stopped training them”.
“But, I can assure you that in the next two to three weeks, we’ll start training, after getting all the logistics required to keep them in camp for the forthcoming national festival. We’re happy that we’ve been recognised to take this challenge and we’re going to give our best and we would make sure that netball is back in Nigeria.” Air Commodore Garba said.
Further speaking about the award, the Vice President, AFFAN said: It is awesome. It bears credence to the fact that people are noticing our efforts and works. I really appreciate. We look for more recognitions.