By Kunle Solaja
Multiple award winner, Nyesom Wike, the Governor of Rivers State of Nigeria will soon be conferred with the award of AIPS-Africa Power of Sports.
The AIPS –Africa previously known as Association of Sports Journalists in Africa (ASJU) is the umbrella body for practicing journalists in Africa and is affiliated to the International Press Association (AIPS).
The former ASJU in 1980 installed Bashorun M.K.O Abiola as the First Pillar of Sports in Africa. No other personality has since be given such continental honour.
But the president of the continental body, Mitchel Obi of Nigeria has written to the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike whose government sponsored the just concluded African Wrestling Championship, that he would soon be installed as AIPS – Africa Power of Sports.
Www.sportsvillagesquare.com gathered that Governor Wike will be the first personality to be so honoured. According to Obi, the conferment of the award “is indeed a badge of honour, freely and independently considered and granted”.
According to the president, the award derives its inspiration from the great Nelson Mandela’s sports school of thought which holds that ‘sports has the power to change the world’.
“We think strongly that this would serve as an apt catalyst to His Excellency as he strives to put sports on the front burner of his developmental strides.
It was also written that at world level, only four personalities had been honoured by AIPS, the last being the immediate past president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Jacques Rogge of Belgium.
Governor Wike is therefore the fifth man in the world and the first African to be honoured. The award adds to the several ones he has been conferred by various news organisation to the governor who has been aptly nicknamed “Mr Projects. “