• Monday, July 15, 2024
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Deaf athletes seek inclusion in National Sports Festival

Deaf athletes seek inclusion in National Sports Festival

Athletes with hearing impairment under the aegis of the deaf athletics association have urged President Muhammadu Buhari and Sunday Dare, minister of youth and sports development, to allow them to participate in the 21st National Sports Festival (NSF) scheduled to hold later in the year in Asaba, Delta State.

The sportspersons, who made the appeal in a protest on Monday in Benin City, said excluding them from the forthcoming sports festival is discriminatory and urged President Buhari to look into the situation with a view to giving them a chance to showcase their talents.

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Speaking on behalf of the protesters, Sunny Aimufua, head coach of deaf sports in Edo, said omitting deaf sports from the national sports festival is tantamount to segregating and depriving the deaf from their rights.

“We are protesting because the deaf have been excluded from the forthcoming National Sports Festival.

“On behalf of the stakeholders, we appeal for the redemption of the Nigerian deaf sports as well as its inclusion in the National Sports Festival tagged “Asaba 2022” and the National Youth Games as a gift from this government to the Nigerian deaf persons.

“If you have a place for the Para-Athletics Federation of Nigeria (PAFN), why can’t you have a place for deaf athletics? They should stop playing politics with deaf sport athletes who are different kinds of persons and need to be encouraged,” Aimufua said.