Can Sports Help Strengthen The Naira?

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It is common knowledge that our economy greatly depends on crude oil production. It is also common knowledge that the International market price of crude oil has been dwindling since last year.

As a result, people from all walks of life have called on the Nigerian Government to diversify our economy. Many highlighted the need for the labour force to return to Agriculture whilst others have turned to enterpreneurship.

Interestingly, to be the best of my knowledge, no one has thought about sports as a solution to our economic mess. Despite sports being a reflection of life in all ramifications, including enterpreneurship. It is amazing how sports development is underrated in contributing hugely to the economy of our great nation.

“Football is like life.. it requires perseverance, self-denial, hard work, sacrifice, dedication and respect for authority.” – Vince Lombardi (American Football Hall of Famer).

Sports is popular for the entertainment, fun and thrill it affords the followers however many fail to realise that sports is big business – a multi-billion naira industry. John Abbamondi, vice president of the NBA’s Team Marketing & Business Operations division, described sports as “a people business.”

Sports can create jobs for many, generate income and support local, national and international economic development. United Nations Secretary Genearal, Ban Ki-moon, once said, “Sport has become a world language, a common denominator that breaks down all the walls, all the barriers. It is a worldwide industry whose practices can have widespread impact. Most of all, it is a powerful tool for progress and for development.”

There are so many ways sports can contribute to economic development in Nigeria such as:

1. Improving physical, mental and social well-being of the citizenry, which can affect the economy via total factor productivity.

2. It will also enhance income generation through the growth of businesses, entrepreneurship and job creation by fostering innovation and trade of sports-related sales and services. On a wider scale, it will boost international trade and foreign exchange earnings. This is in line with the objectives of the BuyNaijaToGrowTheNaira campaign led by Senator Ben Murray-Bruce, which is expected to get legislative backing from the Nigerian Senate soon.

3. Staging any sporting event, whether at local, national or international level, helps to promote national unity through universal values of fair play, mutual respect and friendship. It also opens doors for the host communities to showcase their rich cultural heritage to the world, making them more attractive for tourists and investors. As a consequence, the reputation of the host country is upgraded.

A fortnight ago, the World witnessed The Super Bowl, America’s sporting showpiece, between the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos in Santa Clara, California. It was estimated that about 1.3bn chicken wings were consumed during the event whilst a 30-second advert for the game costs about $4.8m. Just pause and reflect on how these have contributed to the economic development of the host city and the United States at large.

In football, English Premier League (EPL) clubs are renowned for revenue and reportedly spent over £1bn on transfers this season for the first time, according to sports business analysts at Deloitte. However, the Chinese Super League have surprised everyone, outbidding EPL clubs, to emerge as the biggest spenders this January in football transfers.

The Chinese Government have turned their focus to sports as an area to promote economic growth ever since their export-driven economy slowed down. This turnaround started with the Chinese Super League and TV rights for the 2016 to 2020 seasons being sold for £1bn. President Xi has come out and said that by 2025 China wants to have a domestic sports industry worth $850bn (£564bn) so don’t be surprised if/when investors turn their attention to China in the coming years.

The good thing about Sports is that it is accessible to all. Sports help take children off the streets; giving them an avenue to channel their anger and boredom to something productive and educative. This is line with words of Edward Abbe, “The function of football, soccer, basketball and other passion-sports in modern industrial society is the transference of boredom, frustration, anger and rage into socially acceptable forms of combat. A temporary substitute for war; for nationalism; identification with something bigger than the self.”

Nevertheless, Nigerian Government can not do this on their own; they need both indigenous and foreign companies to invest in the development of sports in Nigeria either by sponsoring sports teams or sports events. Sports sponsorship is often adjudged to be the territory of big companies like Globacom, MTN, DSTV etc but small firms can gain a lot by stepping into the ring.

Sports sponsorship is one of the most attractive marketing environment for companies to invest in. Small companies don’t have to break the bank to sponsor a local sports team, stadium, event or kit design. This will afford them plenty of excellent opportunities to market and promote their brand, create valuable goodwill and build their reputation, and develop deeper customer relationships.

However, it is important for companies to note that sports, as a people’s business, is dependent on the consumers – the fans. So all prospective investors ought to think critically and be responsive to the fans’ attitudes before rebranding a sport inorder not to provoke the ire of fans.

Is everybody an addict?

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I was listening to the song John Doe, performed by B.O.B and Priscilla, last night and some lines from the song go like this.

Errybody’s addicted to something
Errybody gotta grip onto something
Even if it’s just to feel the response of appeal
Maybe once, maybe twice
Maybe hundreds of times, hundreds of times

This got my mind racing; is everyone really addicted to something? Is addiction part of our make up as humans? Does it help one to fight his/her inner demons?

To answer these questions; yes I think everybody is addicted to something or capable of being an addict and addiction is a part of human condition. However I don’t know if it helps us crush our inner demons.

Whether it is drugs, sex, violence, alcohol, porn, nicotine, food, gambling, coffee, shopping or something seemingly innocuous like gossiping, exercise, power, religion, love, attention, TV series, music, looks or obsession to work, every individual has addictive tendencies. So, it is left for one to acknowledge that particular bane of his/her life.

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Our world encourages and demands addiction. Just like Oliver Twist, we yearn for more – more money, more power, more knowledge, more success, more status, more gadgets, more cars, more happiness.

Boredom is directly proportional to addiction. Most people can’t handle boredom. To be fair, nobody likes being bored. Once we are bored, we look for things to keep ourselves busy until we cross that fine line between loving or using something a lot, and being addicted. You know what they a say, an idle mind is the devil’s workshop.

In the end, it is safe to presume that everybody is addicted to something and everybody is an addict but we can channel our addictive tendencies into something positive.

What are you addicted to?

“The More” by Chukwukadibia Ude

The more proud you are, the more the bondage of unacceptance

The more stingy you are, the more the bondage of poverty

The more unforgiving you are, the more the bondage of unrest

The more you celebrate your success in front of someone who’s down, the more you keep the person in mental suffering

The more you accuse people, the more the bondage of distrust

The more jealous you are, the more the bondage of planning against people

The more you make jealousy a lifestyle, the more the bondage of falling below those you are jealous of

The more you depend on people, the more the bondage of disappointment/heartbreak

The more cunning you are, the more the bondage of feeling cheated

The more you are quick to get angry (the more irritable you are), the more the bondage of people withdrawing from you

The less considerate you are, the more the bondage of losing people

The more arrogant you are, the more the bondage of loneliness

The more materialistic you are, the more the bondage of vanity/foolishness

The less focus you have, the more the bondage of being misled

The more you complain about people, the more the bondage of depression

The more you live your life for what people will say, the more the bondage of failure

The more you rely on your abilities alone, the more the bondage of stagnation

The more you fail to act, the more the bondage of procrastination

The more you fail to listen, the more the bondage of mistakes

The more you gossip, the more the bondage of darkness.
(You block your own sight while those you gossip about excel)

The more lustful you are, the more the bondage of guilt

The less cheerful you are, the more the bondage of loneliness

The less humorous you are, the more the bondage of rigidity

The less free you are at discussions, the more the bondage of being used

The more you are too open, the more the bondage of disrespect

The less you comport yourself, the more the bondage of low self confidence

The more you appear too simple, the more the bondage of misconception

The more you over praise people, the more the bondage of being seen as an ordinary

The more you say what you are not sure of, the more the bondage of “had I known”

The more you condemn people, the more the bondage of judging people

The more you live a life of competition, the more the bondage of devaluing your best friends

The more you live a life of comparison, the more the bondage of inferiority complex

The more you feel too important or too good at something, the more the bondage of superiority complex

The more tribalistic you are, the more the bondage of favouritism

The more you act as a perfectionist, the more the bondage of seeing others as low standard

The less courage you have, the more the bondage of fear

The more you dirty you are, the more the bondage of disregard

The more rich/successful you appear, the more the bondage of having fake friends

The poorer you appear, the more the bondage of negligence

The more foolish you appear, the more the bondage of being used

The more weakness you reveal, the more the bondage of being influenced

The more you appear too playful, the more the bondage of taking you for granted

The more you eat a lot, the more the bondage of dissatisfaction

The more appear fake, the more the bondage of borrowing/spending unnecessarily

The more you follow those with low mentality, the more the bondage of unnecessary/blind argument

The more you claim you are too brilliant, the more the bondage of being beaten

The more you make noise on a particular course without leading it, the more the bondage of feeling stupid

The more you show off with wealth or position, the more the bondage of irrelevant acquisitions

The more you value too much wine, the more the bondage of spending too much

The more you seek too many women, the more the bondage of worry

The more you seek affair with many men, the more the bondage of worry

The more you live a dirty secret life, the more the bondage of guilt/condemnation

The more you sin, the more the bondage of not praying

The less mercy you show on people, the more the bondage of being judged

The more you betray your friends, the more the bondage of losing them

The less self control you have, the more the bondage of indecision

The more selfish you are, the more the bondage of secrecy and stinginess

The less watchful you are, the more the bondage of regret

The less careful you are, the more the bondage of disappointment

The more you worry, the more the bondage of frustration

The less silent you appear, the more the bondage of trouble

The less love you show, the more the bondage of unhappiness

The more you seek success to beat someone, the more the bondage of daydreams

The more you talk about your dreams, the more the bondage of nightmares

The more you are seen, the more the bondage of being devalued

The more you are afraid of people, the more the bondage of feeling insecure

The more you face trials, the more the bondage of rejection

The more you avoid team work, the more the bondage of remaining the same

The more you refuse to share information, the more the bondage of mediocrity

The more you live above your means, the more the bondage of declining

The less approachable you are, the more the bondage of pride

The less love you are shown, the more the bondage of jealousy

The less you read/know, the more the bondage of concluding wrongly

The wider you read/know however, the more the bondage of criticism

The more you use filthy language, the more the bondage of silly thoughts

The more you act as a false witness, the more the bondage of shame

The more you show too much softness, the more the bondage of being taken for granted

The more you appear too hard, the more the bondage of being feared

The more you complain about problems, the more the bondage of more problems

The more you sleep with someone’s wife or husband, the more the bondage of feeling dead while living

The more you push your ways, the more the bondage of regret

The more you stay idle, the more the bondage of sin/evil

The more you analyse what you do not need, the more the bondage of folly

The more you follow people for what they have, the more the bondage of cheapness

The more you accept bribe, the more the bondage of being perceived as a poor man by the one who bribed

The more you fail to think wide as if there were no box at all, the more the bondage of feeling like an educated illiterate

The more you force yourself to do what you know you do not know how to do, the more the bondage of disgrace

The more you lie, the more the bondage of distrust as well as no peace of mind

The more you chase a man, the more the bondage of hatred for men

The more you sleep with prostitutes, the more the bondage of disregard for women

The more you watch porn, the more the bondage of self induced sex or feeling weak always

The less decent you appear, the more the bondage of attracting wrong people

The more you wear skimpy clothing, the more the bondage of being in the centre of the motives of players

The more you claim too good, the more the bondage of being a target

The more you refuse to change, the more the bondage of same results

The more you drink/eat too much, the more the bondage of having taste difficulties

The more you act as a hypocrite, the more the bondage of being deceitful

The more you block ways for your friends through gossip, the more the bondage
of losing those you advice against your friends

The more you follow the crowd, the more the bondage of “no thought” process

The more you are gender biased, the more the bondage of being right all the time or never being wrong

The more biased you are over issues of life, the more the bondage of confinement with people so unreasonable

The more confined you are, the more the bondage of low esteem

The more you go out too much, the more the bondage of life imbalance

The more you boast of where you are from, the more the bondage of complex

The more you disregard lower workers, the more the bondage of lack of information

The more you fail to teach, the more the bondage of not learning

The more you give conditions for helping people, the more the bondage of low commendation

The more you treat your house girl as
a poor and wretched fellow, the more the bondage of sympathetic betrayal from your good husband

The more you deny people their rights, the more the bondage of being denied in your old age

The more you sleep around for money, grades, possessions, materials, etc, the more the bondage of “no self worth”

The more you kill, the more the bondage of being a beast

The more you give out what you can do, the more the bondage of incompetence

The more you boast about your ambition for money, the more the bondage of trying to impress others

The more you seek only beautiful women, the more the bondage of indecision in selecting a spouse

The more you lie to your spouse, the more the bondage of reduced care

The more your lover hears something about you outside without you telling him/her first, the more the bondage of
disregard

The more you fall for the wrong person, the more the bondage of “on and off” and directionless love

The more the one you love falls for another person, the more the bondage of rejection

The more you neglect the person who loves you naturally, the more the bondage of self pity

The more you listen to gossip, the more the bondage of falsehood

The more you act as a boss but less as a leader, the more the bondage of enmity

The more you fail to smile, the more the bondage of wrong perception

The more you are too objective in your opinions, the more the bondage of misunderstanding from people

The more you show too much concern, the more the bondage of feeling down (because those you show the concern may see it as if you are judging them)

The more you speak too much of the truth, the more the bondage of “having only a few people” around you

The more you get closer to many ladies in the same environment, the more the bondage of worry

The more you criticise people, the more the bondage of pressure to deliver when your own turn comes

The more you give too much support for someone, the more the bondage of bias

The more you laugh at people, the more the bondage of “how can I beg this man to forgive me?”

The more you condemn what you see old people do when you are a teenager, the more you face the bondage of same temptation at your old age

The more you say a church is better than the other, the more the bondage of condemnation in your christian life

The more you gossip about men of God, the more the bondage of falling into traps

The more you keep silent over the wrong opinion of a christian who leads your group, the more the bondage of gossip within the group (Talk to the leader himself)

The more you look down on people, the more the bondage of surprises

The more you expect much from those you feel are the best, the more the bondage of shrugging your shoulders

The less time you give to children, the more the bondage of “not understanding humility”

The less patient you are, the more the bondage of giving up

The less faith you have, the more the bondage of doubt

The more unfaithful you are, the more the bondage of lies

The less your relationship with God, the more the bondage of confusion/wandering

The more indecisive you are, the more the bondage of delay

The less persevering you are in times of trials, the more the bondage of folly

The more over ambitious you are, the more the bondage of losing your loved ones

The less persistent you are, the more the bondage of self disbelief

The more lazy you are, the more the bondage of blindness to opportunities

The more you give up on what you would have done well because you did not look deep, the more the bondage of stupidity

The less questions you ask, the more the bondage of getting it all wrong almost all the time

The less you prepare, the more the bondage of losing

The more you pride yourself on your fighting strength, the more the bondage of defeat

The less you fail to read the word of God, the more the bondage of dying and being inactive

The more you fail to study and practice God’s word, the more the bondage of sin

The more you pay attention to material things more than people, the more the bondage of depression

The more you pride yourself due to your profession, the more the bondage of being the same in reasoning till death

The more you argue with an expert over what you do not know, the more the bondage of feeling ashamed later

The more you over praise your family even when no one asks you, the more the bondage of feeling mocked

The more you defend what people know is true about you, the more the bondage of folly

The less you travel, the more the bondage of a wrong perception of achieving more than others

The less you interact with people from low class, the more the bondage of leading your children astray

The more you tell your children more wrongs about people than rights, the more they face the bondage of causing problems

The more you preach and fail to do, the more the bondage of misleading people

The more you take advantage of people, the more the bondage of disrespect/disgrace

The more you fail to celebrate with others, the more the bondage of rejection

The more you reduce your closeness with loved people because your level has changed, the more the bondage of being devalued