BY AKINWALE ABOLUWADE, IBADAN
The President and Founder, Oduduwa Fighting Championship, Commissioner Preye Dolapo Preboye, has said that the engagement of youths in combat sporting activities in the South-West would help in boosting the Internally Generated Revenues of the zone just as it would engage the unemployed youth productively.
Preboye, in an interview with The Point during the OFC Fighters Call, on Tuesday, at the Lekan Salami Stadium, Adamasingba, Ibadan, said that the initiative had begun to open new opportunities for the younger generation to showcase their skills by channelling their energies aright.
While noting also that it would help in diverting their attention from social vices, Preboye said, “We are here for fighters. We are attracting amateurs and professionals from the six South-West states. We have boxing in the children segment. The children are from age 7 and above. They are here for the trial, and we also have segments for adults from age 18 and above.
“Our aim is to see that Ibadan can host the big event at the stadium as well as at Kakanfo Inn and Conference Centre. The objective is to keep the MMA fighters and the boxers busy on weekend basis.
“In Ibadan, we have fighters from Molete, Iwo Road, Gate, Oke-Ado, Mokola Hilltop and Ologuneru. We are currently putting them in the ring to see how good they are. We want to create a ranking system, like having the best fighter in Under-15, and other categories, so we are working with the local boxing clubs to achieve that.
“I am 100 per cent sure that we can boost the state IGR through sporting activities if it is properly organised. For instance, in order for us to have an event like this, we hired a graphic designer, a printing company, and a catering company because we are giving those fighters food. We hired security, medical personnel and cleaners that we are paying on a weekly basis. There is going to be incentive for the winners at the end of the activities.”
One of the fighters from Focus Martial Art, Ile-Ife, Osun State, Sodiq Suliaman Abobajo, described the experience as very wonderful, adding that it was an opportunity to showcase their talents.
Abobajo stated that, “There are lots of fighters at the grassroots that are good but don’t have the opportunity to showcase their talents. I believe this would give us the opportunity to become who we want to be.”