The announcement was made by the Nigerian Olympic Committee (NOC) at the Bank’s headquarters last Wednesday, July 27, 2016.
The Team Nigeria athletes are scheduled to compete at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, from August 5 to 21, 2016. 100 Nigerian athletes have achieved qualifying standards in several athletics events including Track & Field, Wrestling, Football, Basketball and Tennis.
“Union Bank’s support for team Nigeria at the Olympic Games can be traced back more than 30 years and we are proud to continue this heritage as we again support Team Nigeria in Rio 2016.” said Joe Mbulu, Transformation Director, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc.
“As a devoted supporter of sports and talent development in Nigeria, we strongly believe that this sponsorship is a fantastic opportunity to support grassroots development and also encourage a sense of national pride in Team Nigeria.”
Union Bank will be supporting the 100 member Team Nigeria Olympic and Paralympic athletes participating in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games with N25million. The bank also pledged the sum of N5million to the NOC as it recognizes the work and effort that goes into providing the athletes with customized, creative and impactful coaching education programs.
”Our support for Team Nigeria largely stems from our desire to boast the morale of the athletes, the government does its best to appreciate them but it is the responsibility of the private sector to encourage our athletes and make them home grown treasures. With our contribution to Team Nigeria, we hope that we are one of many others that come on board to pledge support.” said Ogochukwu Ekezie-Ekaidem, Head of Corporate Affairs & Communications, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc.
In order to create an engaged community for Nigerians throughout the Olympics, the Bank also came up with Team Union, a group of Nigerian athletes set to provide a refreshing view of the international sporting event with experiences from the point of view of an athlete. The Team Union athletes will be Nigeria’s ears and eyes on ground at the Olympic Games, providing behind the scene news as a means of ensuring that the Rio 2016 games is a shining light for all Nigerians.
The 5 Team Union athletes include: Seye Ogunlewe, National 100m Champion; Divine Oduduru, National 200m Champion; Regina George, World 4x 200m Champion; Odunayo Adekuruoye, World Championship Bronze Medallist and Hannah Babalola, African Record Holder, T54 100m & 200m.
While commending Union Bank for the sponsorship, Tunde Popoola, Secretary General of the Nigeria Olympic Committee, said, “We are aware of Union Bank’s long standing commitment to the development of sports in Nigeria and we greatly appreciate them for playing a lead role by sponsoring Team Nigeria. They are not only supporting our national talents but they are also setting an example for others in the private sector to follow.”
With Union Bank teams currently competing in both the state and national levels in different sports including Basketball, Hockey and Table Tennis, the sponsorship of the Nigerian Olympic Team affirms the Bank’s commitment to the growth of sports in Nigeria.
This is a feature by Union Bank.