Wasimi is alive-Segun Odegbami

August 20, 2019

There are now over 2000 young football players and their coaches in Wasimi.  When I visited with Uncle TK this evening the Baptist Primary School premises was swarming with participants undergoing screening, kicking the ball around, making friends, discussing the festival, or just having fun hanging around thè effervescent environment.

One day to the start of the festival the town seems overwhelmed with the presence of this flood of humanity.

I went round  chatting with excited participants, each with a dream in their eyes, eager to get started, unable to wait till tomorrow.

Teams are arranging short impromptu matches between themselves on the single football field that is simultaneously being mowed around the small areas that have some stumpy grass on the undulating football field.

Next year we shall ensure the number of football fields is increased and that each one is a bit lush with grass to make the matches better to watch and play, and the players better to evaluate.

Next year also, the organisers have promised to work harder to get manufacturers of food and drinks manufacturers to be a part of the event in order to support it and make life a little better for most participants that came without any sponsorship, with little or no money, but the determination to survive somehow and get to play in the championship.

I watched with amazement as a game was going on at the same time as the grass on the field was being cut with a lawnmower. Simply unbelievable.

The kids just can’t wait for kick-off tomorrow.

As Africa’s NCD (Non Communicable Disease) champion, I shall be joining a global awareness campaign, appropriately titled ENOUGH ( as my own contribution to the global goal of slowing down the incidences of the silent killer diseases – cardiovascular ailments, diabetes, cancer, High Blood Pressure, even Obesity) next Thursday.  I shall be addressing all the participants, officials and the townfolk about the  global scourge and the essential things they all can do,  mostly exercise, active transport, physical activities and a healthy life style, all of which sport and school provide in ample quantity.

That would be my first contribution as  Africa’s NCD champion.  I cànt also wait to watch them react to the good news that sustaining the practise to older ages is a sure passage to a healthier and longer life in the future.

We left Wasimi as the sun dropped off the horizon, and drove the 15 minutes back to Abeokuta in silence, deep in thought and appreciation about the opportunity the Universe has provided me to be a part of, and play a little role in this piece of history unfolding in Wasimi.

Have you visited my website today, or ever at all? If not, you have missed something that may be special.

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