Football Club patron urges youths to shun sports betting
A philanthropist, James Nwokike patron of Ayom na Okpala Old School FC, Awka, Capital City of Anambra has called on youths to find other sustainable means of livelihood other than betting.
Nwokike, popularly called Aka Mmanu Awka said this when the football club unveiled him as its patron in Awka.
Ayom na Okpala Old School FC is a community based team for residents of Atom na Okpala village of Awka, the capital city of Anambra.
Nwokike who is into property business said youths should engage in the game of football for the reward it offers athletes or excitement it gives to enthusiasts and not for staking money.
He expressed worry that sports betting had impoverished more youths than it had enriched them adding that rather many youths have taken to crime and other vices in the bid to get more money to stake.
The patron reminded them that not everybody would make it in life while charging the club members to shun all forms of violence but rather use it to build a more friendly and secure environment in the area.
“Football is good, sports is good they keep youths positively busy and bring fortune to those who play so we are really missing the suspension of games as a result of Corona Virus Disease.
“But I must advise our youths against betting, it is bad that most of them follow football these days because they try their luck with betting, some of them now steal from their parents to bet.
“There may be one or two persons that have been lucky with betting but many of our youths are now lazy, they don’t want to work because they are hoping to win free money, it is bad for their future.
“I learn how to fix aluminum doors and windows, people were giving small jobs, it was not easy until I changed my line of trade, so I advise them to have something that God can bless like handwork,” he said.
Nonyelum Onyeawka, Chairman of the club said Ayom na Okpala FC was formed to bring together both indigenous and migrant youths residents of Awka.
Onyeawka said they were worried with the spate of cult activities in Awka and were determined to fight the vice and other crimes in the town through positive engagements.
He said the club no longer play regularly as before due to the lockdown but was conscious of the COVID-19 safety tips.
“We have our hand wash bucket and soap, sanitisers and different jerseys at training grounds and bibs as a matter of fact, we are using this club to created more awareness among the people here,” he said.