A NON-governmental organisation of OGE Women, Children & Youth Empowerment Initiative bankrolled a maiden IDP Games.
The IDP stands for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) drawn from the north east of the country. They were displaced as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency taking place at the area.
The event was staged by the NGO, Oge, run by female journalist, Oge Pepsie Adiukwu, a popular sports television presenter and Director of the project.
The venue of the event was the New Kuchingoro Abuja, where the IDP camp is currently located.
As expected, the filled to capacity on Dec. .., with hundreds of excited children and residents of the camp who came to witness the novel project.
The children and other residents enjoyed a fun-filled day of games, music and food.
At the end, a 15-year-old IDP, John Dawa, emerged as the MVP from the 5-a-side football event and thereby securing a scholarship to the Pepsi Football Academy, Abuja Centre.
According to Adiukwu, the games’ participants were split into three teams: Peace, Love and Pepsie; competing in events such as the sack race, the egg and spoon race and a biscuit eating challenge while the women contested in a head tie challenge.
“Promoting physical activity and competition, especially amongst children, is important as it helps them to develop a disciplined lifestyle and a healthy mind” said Adiukwu, the Director of OGE.
“OGE is encouraging these youngsters to get active and practice healthy lifestyles and we are using the theme “Get Them” as a ‘double entendre.’
“We want to get the children, youngsters and women before the bad people (human traffickers) do and we also want to get the traffickers and bring them to justice.
“I strongly believe that these vulnerable people need our support and a recurrent awareness campaign on the dangers of traffickers.
“I hope that our support will help give them the incentive to adopt an active lifestyle and motivation to say no to traffickers.”
At the end, it was discovered that OGE managed to feed no fewer than 300 IDPs during the event.
According to the director it was obvious that these people were starving. She and her team were almost overwhelmed while sharing the food but for the presence of the policemen who ensure that the situation did not get out hand.
“A hungry man is an angry man,” noted Adiukwu, who urged President Muhammadu Buhari to direct the appropriate government agency in charge of the camp to come to their aid.
Adiukwu notes: “there are fights frequently, at the camp during food sharing with people getting injured”.
However, I must confess that I am overwhelmed at the huge turnout and the success of her IDP “Get Them” games.
She vowed that OGE would remain totally committed to its mission, saying that they would be dedicated toward ‘making significant difference’ to the lives of the underprivileged women, children and youth of the country.
Adiukwu also says they will also fighting against their being trafficked.
An appreciable quantity of the “Get Them” T shirts were distributed in addition to other gift items.
OGE used the occasion to also spread such messages as: “Empower the Vulnerable People…Keep them from the reach of Traffickers”, “Speak Out Against Traffickers” and “Don’t Be Trafficked”
Iain Nelson, Chairman, Friends of OGE praised the director for the initiative concerning the IDPs.
“I just want to congratulate Oge Pepsie Adiukwu for the tremendous support she has been giving to the IDP children and I believe her “Get Them” theme may well be the precursor to a nationwide campaign against human traffickers.”
The Pepsi Football Academy, Abuja coach Rasheed Afolabi who attended the games said “to be honest with you, the boys are very skilful. I really look forward to the MVP, John Dawa, joining us at the Pepsi Football Academy.”
Dawa, the MVP scholarship winner, who ran from Gwoza in Borno State to Cameroon to escape Boko Haram insurgency, said: “I am very happy, I like football, I thank you aunty”
He had come back to Madagali in Adamawa and before finally making to the Abuja camp.
His father is currently in the IDP camp in the Cameroon while his mother is in Keffi, living with elder sister, who is married there.
John lives in the IDP Abuja camp with his elder brothers has since been taken out for camp by John Fashanu for training.
Fashanu, on hearing about Dawa emerging as the MVP at the event said: “I’m really delighted that John won the MVP at the IDP “Get Them” games.
“It’s a testament to the coaching we’ve given him so far. I wish him the best of luck at the Pepsi Football Academy”.