Folusho Alade

Athletes with disabilities have compensatory mechanism from God to achieve whatever they set their mind to do, according to DR SAMUEL  ANKELI , a Para-athlete and senior special assistant to the president of Nigeria on disability matters. ANKELI made this submission while speaking to journalists during the inauguration and merger of the PARA-SHOOTING FEDERATION with the NIGERIAN SHOOTING SPORTS FEDERATION.

Speaking further at the inauguration, ANKELI said records has shown over time that the Para-athletes do better than the able bodied athletes during international sporting events citing the 2016 RIO OLYMPICS and the just concluded GOLD COAST COMMONWEALTH GAMES.

When asked how he has used his office and position to better the lots of Para-athletes, DR ANKELI said apart from being a personal motivation to these athletes he has used his position as an adviser to the President on disability matters to engage policy makers on how to improve Para- sports as well as ensuring prompt release of budgetary allocations for Para-sports and judicious use of such allocations. He however called on well-meaning Nigerians and the private sector to invest in Para-athletes and Para-sports as the government alone cannot do it.

Nigeria’s Para-athletes won a total of eight medals at the 2016 RIO OLYMPIC GAMES while the able bodied athletes only managed one bronze.

Nigeria also won all four powerlifting gold medals at Gold Coast 2018 COMMONWEALTH GAMES.