Determined to sharpen the skills of Nigerian karatekas and to further give them a platform to exhibit their technical knowledge ahead international championships, the Karate Federation of Nigeria under the leadership of Chief Donatus Agu Ejidike, J.P has concluded arrangements for National Cadet, Junior and Senior Championship scheduled to hold in Lagos next month.
In a press statement by the President, Karate Federation of Nigeria, Chief Ejidike, the championship will hold between December 5 and 10, 2016 at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.
The championship is designed to expose karatekas and give them the opportunity to tango among themselves for the purpose of ranking and grading ahead of international competitions.
The president explained further that karatekas are being expected from all the states of the federation including Federal Capital Territory, FCT Abuja even as letters of invitation and participation have been dispatched to states associations.
KFN President who also doubles as the Nigeria Pillar of Sports disclosed that the Cadet category which is between the ages of 14 and 15 years for male shall fall within the weight level of -52kg, – 57kg, and -63kg while females shall be within the weight level of -47kg, -54kg, and +54kg.
In the Junior category, karatekas between the ages of 15 and 17 years shall fall within the weight level of -55kg for individuals kata Kumite.
Chief Ejidike encouraged states to send their karatekas to the championship as it will go a long way in enhancing their knowledge of the martial game which will debut in 2020 Olympics in Japan.
He said the Federation will continue to do everything to promote and develop the game in Nigeria.
The Championship is sponsored by the National President, Chief Donatus Ejidike and other top members of the federation.
* Beats Delta and Lagos State to 2nd and 3rd place respectively.
*Anambra State Ngozi Okoro wins Most Valuable Karateker of the Championship.
*Pillar of Sports and Federation president – Chief Donatus Agu – Ejidike JP, speaks on Vision 2020.
Anambra State Karate Association has emerged the winner of the 3rd edition of Hajiya Zainab Saleh Karate Championship, the week long event which came to a climatic end, drew well wishers, friends of the federation and also the Director Federation Sports from the Ministry of Youths and Sports, Mrs Hawawu Kulu Adeyemi represented the Minister For Youths and Sports.
The third edition of Hajiya Zainab Saleh International Female Karate Championship saw karatekers competing for honours in the Senior and Junior Kumute in the following categories, Senior Female Individual Kumute (WKF) +18 in -50kg,-55kg,-61kg, 68kg +68 kg. In the Junior Female (WFK) Kamute of – 40kg, -53kg,-59kg and +59kg in Brown and Blackbelt, Green and Blue belt and White and Yellow belt.
At the final medal count Anambra State Karate Association came first with 3 gold, 4 Silver and 6 Bronze Medals, with Delta State also finishing strong on the table with 3 Gold Medals only, Lagos State Karate Association pulled 2 Gold, 3 Silver and 2 Bronze Medals to come third in the competition.
The only participating foreign country Benin Republic came forth with One Gold and a silver alongside Nigerian Security and Defence Corps who also got the same number of medals, that left Edo State, Samchin Karate Academy and Oki Martial Arts all tied on the table with 1 Gold medal each to finish fifth on the log.
The FCT came sixth with 1 Silver while Kishikan RYU Martial Arts along side the Nigerian Police and Ogun State had a bronze Meda each to place seventh in a champiinship that had 12 States of the federation, 13 karate Clubs and Benin Republic featuring in the week long event.
The Icing on the cake was Anambra State’s Ngozi Okoro who got 1 Gold, 1 Silver and a bronzemedal to emerge the most Valuable karateker of the Championship.
While giving his remarks at the closing ceremony,the Pillar of Sports in Nigeria Chief Donatus Agu-Ejidike called for total unity and focus among federation members towards the 2020 olympics in Tokyo now that karate has become an olympic sport, the president also promise to popularise Karate as a sport and also to push for its inclusion in the school curriculum to enhance participation at secondary school level, as this will help with the learning of the rudiments faster.
speaking futher the Pillar of Sports in Nigeria says” obviously, We have a long way to go, the journey is long but the spirit is high, As we hope and plan to participate in the 2020 Olympics when Karate will debut fully at the global games”. while making references to Nigeria performances in 2011 and Republic of Congo in 2015 where Nigeria clinched a bronze medal as an eye opener that the federation will want to build on the feat, he rounded up by calling on private organisation, the media and Multinationals for colaboration and support to help in the development of Karate in Nigeria.
Moreover the Director of federation sports and reprensatative of the Hon. Minister for Youths and Sports Mrs Hawa Kulu Akinyemi has called for concerted efforts to push karate forward, while thanking the sponsor Hajiya Zainab Saleh for her sterling efforts in seeing that the sport of Karate is well developed among the female folks in the country, she finally promised the ministry’s support for Karate at all times.
Speaking at the event the sponsor Hajiya Zainab Saleh admonished ladies to take all they have learnt to heart.
The Chairman of Lagos Karate Association Mr Alfred Ohimain thanked all the participating States, Officials, friends of the Karate Federation, while making special reference to Mr George Ashiru, the President Taekwando Federation of Nigeria for their time, advise and support, with the promise the sport is set to grow bigger as the state association is not resting on its oars in its bid to make Karate More Popular In Nigeria.