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Awka’s elite sports club, Keep Fit celebrates New Yam, honours outstanding members



KEEP Fit Sports Club of Awka, a section of Capital Sports Club, Awka, Saturday, marked her 2021 IwaJi [New Yam] Festival, which started with a physical fitness exercise and ended with recognition and honouring of  some members of the club with Outstanding Service Awards for their various contributions to the growth of the club.

  The event, which was introduced  in 2020,was held at the Event Hall, Anambra Newspapers and Printing Corporation (ANPC), Awka, publisher of National Light,  Ka O Di Taa,   SportslightXTRA and Homeland  newspapers, was graced by dignitaries, Presidents General[PGs], past and present presidents of the club, members and friends of the club. 

  Captain of the Keep Fit Sports Club and Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, ANPC, Sir Chuka Nnabuife,  described Keep Fit as a section of the Capital Sports Club, established to pass knowledge on the need to exercise the body.

  He said: “This is a club of less than 200 persons and we do meet every week for exercise for the fitness of our bodies and souls. It is also a club of people who realise and recognise where they are from. Some of us are not Igbo, we recognise that New Yam Festival ( Ili Ji) is one cardinal culture of ndi Igbo. That is why every year, during the New Yam Festival time, we do organise ours”.

  Sir Nnabuife, speaking on how sports relate to the celebration of the New Yam Festival, emphasised that the club comprises individuals of Igbo origin who value things of culture and tradition, especially in Anambra State where the IwaJi is a prime festivity.

  Immediate past President General of Nsugbe and President, Capital Sports Club, Obiora Onyeadi, described  Capital Sports Club as the mother club to Keep Fit Club.  “Keep Fit is the arm of Capital Sports Club and still promotes the main club.  This is the second time Keep Fit Club is organising such an event and we are seeing a lot of improvement”. We are hoping that by the time we will be observing the third one next year, it will be much bigger.

  Onyeadi further explained that the essence of the annual celebration was to promote the rich Igbo culture. “We should not allow our culture to die wherever we find ourselves.  It is something we cannot do without. The English people sold to us their own culture and we embraced it. The New Yam Festival should be sold to the world so that our own culture would be recognised by the world. I am so happy to receive the award, because most of the people that we all started the club with are not here but i thank God that i am here today.

  The Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer, Anambra State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Mrs Chioma Ezenyimulu, said the event was very colourful. “Iwaji Festival in Igbo culture epitomises the beginning of new things and it is very remarkable that the Keep Fit Sports Club has identified with culture and that will bring good things to them”.

  The Director of Social And Welfare, Capital Sports Club, Keep Fit Section, Kenechukwu Henry, expressed how happy he was seeing the event coming to conclusion without any problem. “This has been our yearly event that we give much attention because it is the most significant culture we portray in the club”

  One of the coaches of Capital Sports Club, Keep Fit Section, Emeka Ementa, said that the event was very outstanding one.” We have beendoing it but this year’s own is very special. We are aspiring for more members to join us and keep fit.

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