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Ministry of Health, Youths and Sport updates journalists on ‘Sport for Health’ activities

Feb 24, 2014, 11:15 AM | Article By: Malamin L.M. Conteh

The Ministry of Health, Youth and Sports recently held a press briefing to update journalists on the forthcoming “Sport For Health” activities slated for 7-9 March 2014, to be held at the Serrekunda Mini-stadium.

Briefing the journalists, the Deputy Director of Planning at the Ministry of Youths and Sports, Pa Suwareh Faye, informed journalists about the rationale behind the press briefing which he said was to update journalists on the preparation of the ‘Sport For Health’ activities.

He said the Government of The Gambia under President Yahya Jammeh was highly committed and steadfast in ensuring that sport was decentralizes in its national goals and objectives.

On this backdrop, he went on, the Ministry of Youth and Sport (MoYS) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare deemed it fit to organize ‘Sport for Health’ activities for the Executives, Legislators, Judiciary, Politicians, the Communities, NGOs, Parastatals, the combined security services, and business communities.

He said the purpose of the activities was to encourage the workers to become fit, have good health and at the end they could have healthier nation, adding that these was the rationale behindorgainsing ‘Sport For Health’ activities, which he said, was very important.

According to Mr Faye, this year’s event would be the third activities of its kind, adding that the first and second activities were held in 2012 and 2013 at the22nd July Square in Banjul and SereKunda West Mini-stadium, in the Kanfing Municipality respectively.

Faye told journalists that the activities started with four institutions, such as the Civil Service, the Executive, Legislative and Judiciary, and since then it had growth, adding that this year they are expecting eleven institutions to take part in the activities.

He disclosed that everybody was free to be part of the activities, noting that anybody who participated in the exercise would have healthier body.

Everything was ready and they are now waiting for the kick-off of the activities proper with the good work of the sub-committee, he told journalists, adding that another three new events were added to this year’s activities which were not part of it in last year’s activities.

Those new extra activities, he added, are the march-past from Traffic Light Junction along Kairaba Avenue to SerreKunda West Mini-stadium, an Aerobic and Volleyball respectively.

Mr Faye also revealed that there will be free testing of blood sugar level and if possible cardio during the three-day event, stressing that people could see how the activities would be of importance to their health status.

Deputy Director Faye called on the general public, especially the civil servants to come forward and take part in this important event, noting it would also give participants opportunity to interact and know each other.

Director of Health Services, Momodou Njie, described ‘Sport For Health’ as an important initiative and a very good partnership built between the two ministries.

“We know in this country people do less exercise because evidence have shown that one of the risk factors is non-communicable disease, diets, tobacco, and alcohol consumption all this factors among them is physical inability which the event is going to focus on,” Njie explained.

According to Mr Njie, President Jammeh was always advising people to ‘eat what they grow’ and ‘grow what they eat,’ adding that if people want to have good diet they need to do exercise.

This event, he added, was taking place for people to do exercise, especially people who are always enjoying 24 hour AC system in their offices, saying that if anybody wants to cut down diseases like cancer, diabetes and others, needed to do exercise.

Malang Jassey, Deputy Director of Youth and Sport, informed journalists that ‘Sport For Health’ was at the heart of his ministry because of the motivation from The Gambian leader, President Yahya Jammeh.

“We are being motivated because the two ministries realize that the event is a consortium between the institutions that are expected to take part in the activities so that together we can achieve the goals and objectives of The Gambia’s vision 2020,” Jassey said.