By Amaechi Agbo
The National Institute for Transports Technology, NITT, Zaria, Kaduna, has won the hosting rights of the 2021 Research Institutes Games Association of Nigeria, RIGAN Games.
The decision to award NITT the hosting rights was arrived in during the National Executive Council, NEC meeting of the association held in Abuja on Wednesday
Although the Zaria-based NITT got the hosting rights, the competition will hold in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Speaking on the hosting, RIGAN President, Professor Owolade Oluwaferanmi said that NITT was awarded the hosting right but added that the competition will hold in Abuja and not Zaria due to security challenges in the area.
The President also explained that the institute was given a six-week deadline to give the NEC feedback on its readiness to host the games slated for December this year
“The main resolution reached in the meeting is that the National Institute for Transports Technology, NITT is the host institute for the 2021 RIGAN Games and has been directed by the national council to bring the game to Abuja. This is due to insecurity in Zaria especially in Kaduna, the gateway to Zaria.
“The representative of the Director, Dr Mundi Ibrahim has accepted that the game will be moved to Abuja and that they have the approved budget to pay for every facility that will be used.
“We have given them 6 weeks to respond. After the 6 weeks, the National Executive Council of RIGAN will come to inspect and ascertain the readiness of those facilities for the games,” he said.
NITT Assures of Readiness
The Nigeria National Institute for Transports Technology, NITT, has declared its readiness to host the 2021 RIGAN games despite change in venue and location.
The Director, Library and Information Services, Department NITT, DR Baba Ibrahim Mundi who represented NITT in the NEC meeting said the institute is ready to comply with the conditions attached to the hosting rights.
Dr Mundi who said that the situation and reason for change in venue and location from Zaria to Abuja was understandable, added that the institute will give the association feedback within the six weeks deadline.
“Actually, it is an unexpected thing but if you look at it from the other way round, you will agree that it is also expected because of the circumstance to which we found ourselves in Nigeria – the issue of security.
“When the council deliberated, a lot of council members were of the opinion that instead of hosting it in Zaria as earlier agreed, due to security challenges, they were soliciting to the council that the hosting should be shifted to Abuja which looks relatively safe. It was on that note that members will be able to have access to attend.
“In line to that and because of the spirit of sportsmanship we want all of us to gather and be able to participate actively, the institute is left with no choice than for me to give an interim agreement and approval to that which I am going to communicate with my Director General.
“By the grace of God, I hope that within the time frame they have given to us to communicate back to them in terms of our level of preparedness, since the hosting has taken a u-turn as to what we expected before to hosting it in Abuja, we pray that within this time frame, we will be able to make all the necessary arrangement available and be able to communicate back to the national executive council of RIGAN.”
On the six-week deadline for them to meet up with the NEC’s expectations, Dr Mundi said the institute can do it.
“It is the council’s decision and I cannot say no. when you look at it, to start looking for a new venue now is going to be a lot of jobs but I want to believe that because of those who are also seeking for this hosting right being located in Abuja, we are going to use their wing to fly so that arrangement will be much easier for us to be able to cope and we fulfil the obligation within the timeframe that was given. I believe we can do it.”
RIGAN was established in 1979 to bring all research institutes staffs in the country together for recreation, friendship and competition in all ramifications.
The games will be marking its 17th anniversary this year. RIGAN has sustained the spirit of camaraderie with medals and trophies to be won during the competition.