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MPN sponsors training for 200 athletes to boost sports in Akwa Ibom State

Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN), the Joint Venture partner of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has sponsored the training of about 200 athletes in Akwa Ibom, as part of its efforts to boost athletics in the state.

Speaking at an event to commemorate the commencement of the athletes’ training, The Akwa Ibom State governor, represented by the commissioner for education, Obong Aniekan Akpan, thanked MPN for their support.

“MPN has shown their support for the State sports and eductation development by discovering and developing talented youths in the state through Akwa Ibom State / Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation/ Mobil Producing Nigeria (AKS/NNPC/MPN) secondary schools athletics championship which has been running for many years now," he said. “The governor expresses deep appreciation to MPN for stepping up the programme from mere competition to developing of the talents discovered during the competition and organizing the Holidays Camping/Training Programme for the athletes.”

Aneikan pointed out that the camping facilities and training sessions would continue to produce more national champions from the state, such as Aniekeme Alphonsus Etim, who won many medals for the country at the 12th African Junior Athletics Championships in Addis Ababa and Mauritius, and rose to become the best female junior athlete in the country. He advised the athletes passing through the training sessions to make the most of the opportunity they had been given by the Company.

Speaking further, the commissioner for youth and sports, represented by the permanent secretary Otuekong Nse Edem thanked MPN for supporting efforts to discover hidden sports talents at the grassroots level through its regularly sponsored training and competitions. Edem assured the Company that the state government would leverage on its efforts and achievements to bring more sports development to the state.

Edem stated that, “The state government has already established ten sports centres in the state where the talents discovered during the training can undergo further training which will prepare them for future championship competition.”

Paul Arinze, General Manager, Public and Government Affairs, MPN expressed satisfaction for the successes recorded by the championship so far. “The management of MPN is excited over the tremendous achievement of the athletic championship which has become one of the signature programmes of the company in the area of youths and grassroots sports development in the state,” he said.

Arinze noted that MPN had invested over 350 million Naira in the sponsorship of the athletics championships in the last 15 years, as part of its efforts in the development grass root sports in Akwa Ibom State.

“The company has received a lot of letters from parents and guardians expressing their appreciations for the one-off scholarship grants given to the athletes for their education which has gone a long way to alleviate their financial burdens,” he said.

He thanked the Akwa Ibom State government and everyone that contributed to the success of the Company’s operation in the state, and the success recorded in the championship for the past 15 years.