By Usiere Akpan
The Akwa Ibom government has announced readiness to inaugurate an Olympic standard size swimming pool soon in the state.
The swimming pool will form part of the major sports facilities to serve contingents in the coming 13th biennial all Nigeria Police games this month, in the state.
Gov Udom Emmanuel made this known during an inspection of the extent of work done at the facility within the complex of the township stadium, Uyo, Saturday.
Emmanuel, accompanied by members of the state executive council said that his administration foresees another economic window in the police games, explaining that the expected 6,000 athletes, 35,000 spectators and officiating personnel would engagements would trickle in several value chain to the economy of the state.
The governor stated that the acceptance to host the expected week long sports fiesta of the Nigeria Police has given the inspiration to build the swimming pool, expand and improve upon existing sports facilities in the state, remarking that the police games remain one of the biggest sporting events to draw heaps of socio-economic activities in the state.
Emmanuel mentioned that the police games would also precede the 2022 edition of the Akwa Ibom carol festival to boost further seasons of social and economic activities in the state, assuring that accessibility to the events through air travels has been secured by the arrival of two new A320 aircrafts acquired to increase the Ibom Air fleet.
He reiterated that his administration would continue to meet up with envisaged heightened demands of people in the use of sports facilities in the state, adding that the annual Christmas carol festival would continue to be a signature event at the Yuletide.
Emmanuel expressed satisfaction with the level of work at the swimming pool and appreciated the Inspector General of Police, Mr Usman Baba, for the choice of Akwa Ibom for the police games, giving kudos to the Ministry of Youths and Sports, for proving capacity, in the quality of work, timeliness and level of completion of the project in line with the philosophy of the present administration.
The commissioner for youth and sports, Sir Monday Uko, assured that the swimming pool project was near completion for inauguration, affirming that the swimming pool was built to Olympic standard of 25 metres by 50 meters in area, 2 meters depth, a 1,500 spectators capacity and well covered sitting area.
The commissioner of police, Akwa Ibom command, Mr Olatoye Durosinmi, said that Akwa Ibom would be a safe haven for the event, expressing satisfaction with the preparedness of the state to host the 2022 Police Games.
Durosinmi mentioned that the police was ready to thrill Nigerians again with the display of world-class sports and exhibition talents.