By TUNDE SHAMSUDEEN
State of Osun Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has emphasised the importance of physical exercise in the overall development of healthy lifestyle and urged citizens of his state and Nigerians at large to embrace active engagement in sports.
Speaking at the unveiling of the maiden edition of the OSBC – Oshogbo City Half-Marathon, the governor who noted that sports, most especially, football has become a money-spinning and revenue generation activity, especially at this period of economic recession added that the state has great potentials which could be discovered and nurtured to stardom.
Highlights of the occasion was the inauguration of a customized Marathon Sandals for the forthcoming international event.
The maiden edition of OSBC – Oshogbo City Half-Marathon holds on Saturday 15th of April in Oshogbo.
According to Aregbesola, the noble roles played by sport in the emancipation of mankind cannot be downplayed, hence, the need for everyone to engage in one sporting activity or another in order to promote healthy living and as well unearth budding talents which abounds within the state.
Represented by his deputy, Mrs.Titi Laoye-Tomori, the governor described the importance attached to sports development and healthy living of the citizenry as second to none, hence, the introduction of “Walk-to-live” monthly exercise by his administration to ensure that apart from ensuring healthy living of its people, also ensured that many are taken away from the sick bed.
While noting that his administration has provided a peaceful atmosphere for the maiden voyage of the OSBC – Oshogbo City Half-Marathon to succeed, Ogbeni Aregbesola commended the management of the Osun State Broadcasting Corporation for being a trail-blazer and for setting the pace, while also promising the support of the state government in the overall success of the programme.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Chairman, Interim Management Committee of the Osun State Broadcasting Corporation, Kola Akanji, had recalled that the since the inception of the Aregbesola-led administration in the State of Osun, it has left no one in doubt of its love fascination on the need to keep body healthy.
Akanji, who noted that advantages that could be derived from Marathon race, most especially, for Osun State and the need to build upon the “Walk-to-Live” program prompted the management of the OSBC to partner with a reputable sports management and marketing outfit, Macjey, to promote the spirit of sportsmanship, healthy living and unearth budding talents and expose them to lime-light.
He added that the route for the Oshogbo City Half-Marathon is being carefully mapped out to follow the “Ona Baba Ona” to showcase to the whole world lots of infrastructural development achieved by the state government despite the bitting recession.
Acting Director General, Osun State Broadcasting Corporation, Wale Idowu, in his address said the idea behind the project is to institute a new face of the State of Osun on a sustainable tempo, engineer an antidote to the ravaging unemployment, put smiles on despondent faces, swell empty pockets, enable a profitable platform for marketers and advertisers, foster relationship among and across ages and races, as well as stem the tide of anti-social tendencies in the society.