PANASA President Adegbesan lands in Lagos ahead of President’s Cup, AYSC

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…Embrace one another in the spirit of our ‘Africannness’ – Adegbesan urges all participants
…13 Presidents and Chairmen of African Scrabble Federations and Associations due in Lagos for the historic events

By Maxwell Kumoye

The President of one of the most active sporting bodies on the continent, the Pan African Scrabble Association (PANASA), Adekoyejo Adegbesan landed in the ‘City of Aquatic Spandor’ Lagos ahead of the start of the inaugural editions of the PANASA President’s Cup (PPC) and the African Youth Scrabble Championship (AYSC) holding simultaneously in Lekki-Lagos from the 24th to the 28th of this month.

Adegbesan touched down in Lagos on Monday night from his base in Ireland aboard Royal Dutch Airline (KLM) and was received by top members of PANASA’s secretariat, Scrabble officials, players and members of the media.

The Pan African Scrabble Association Boss told newsmen on arrival that the Main Organizing Committee for the two championships have done a marvelous, detailed work that the rest of the Scrabble fraternity will be proud of at the end of the two-in-one event that is geared towards making the game of words attractive, appealing, exciting, lucrative and rewarding.

The tech expert and sports administrator affectionately called the Sheikh, called on all the visiting players, officials and delegates that are already congregating in Lagos for the Scrabble feast to feel free and welcome.

“They should embrace one another in the spirit of our ‘Africannness’, the games should be played in the knowledge that we are one family and this should be a celebration of our sports and our unity.”

As the host of the inaugural editions of the PANASA President’s Cup and the African Youth Scrabble Championship, I call on every Nigerian and residents of the city of Lagos to shower our August guests with our irresistible traditional hospitality. “Every Nigerian must welcome our guests who have come from all over Africa, including the lone player from the USA.” Adegbesan stressed.

In a bid to make their coming into the country easy, the host Association for the African Youth Scrabble Championship and the President’s Cup, the Nigeria Scrabble Federation (NSF) and the Pan African Scrabble Association have worked hand in hand with Nigeria’s High Commissions around Africa and Nigeria Embassy in the US in the area of issuance of visas to players and officials.

PANASA President, Adegbesan stated that all visiting players and officials who applied for visas online have been issued visas. “All visas have been issued to all those who applied online. Working with the NSF, PANASA has been able to secure all visas for players who require one.”

“We will continue to facilitate visas as more applications are made.” Adegbesan added.

Ugandan Scrabble sensation and equally jovial, Andrew Akwanya was the first foreign star to arrive for the President’s Cup last week Wednesday. Andrew Akwanya along with Kenya’s number one player Allan Oyende who came in on Thursday, flew in on the wings of Kenya Airways, one of PANASA’s partners. They came in early to acclimatize and get some warm-up games under their arms before the competition.

In a related development, beginning Tuesday, Presidents and Chairmen of 13 African Scrabble Federations and Associations will be landing in Lagos for the two championships and PANASA’S special members Associations meeting and the Awards and Gala Night.

The very strong and united front for the game of Scrabble that will be storming Lagos will be led by the President of the host Federation, Engineer Toke Aka, the administrator that helped to midwife, spread and stabilizer PANASA for 12 solid years.

The President of The Gambia Scrabble Association (GSA) Dr. Abba Hydara arrived Tuesday morning from Banjul aboard AirPeace another partner of PANASA.

Botswana, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, South Africa, The Gambia, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia are some members Associations of Pan African Scrabble Association’s leaders that are due in Lagos as from Tuesday.

Over 170 players will be competing at the President’s Cup holding between the 24th and 28th of this month at the Orchid Hotel Ikota-Lekki, Lagos, South West, Nigeria.

32,000 dollars has been set aside as prize money for the President’s Cup that has been enjoying huge corporate and individual backing and the Main Organizing Committee for the event have been ticking the right boxes in order to stage a befitting and memorable competition and Awards and Gala Night.

The list include, Nigeria Breweries Plc, Friesland Campina WAMCO Plc, Kenya Airways, Diageo Nigeria, Air Peace, Winifred Awosika Foundation, Ojeyz Security based in Ghana, Ayoci Energies Ltd, Atelier Architects, which is also a Ghanaian firm, Thrive Agriculture, SocialLiga, Midas Farm, Cinq-SAA, Madoms Global Trade, Boaz Commodities Ltd, Petrichor Group of Industries and BradMein Nigeria Ltd among others

Well meaning stakeholders and individuals with deep pockets and kind hearts like Engineer Gbenga Ojofeitimi, Musa Olasupo, Engineer Ojior Osikhena, Samuel Anikoh, Austin Isiekwe and SM Quartey have been lubricating the sponsorship, partnership and support base of the PANASA President’s Cup.

The 2023 African Youth Scrabble Championship holds between the 24th and 28th of this month at the Chrisland School, Lekki-Lagos with over 150 young players from 14 countries expected in attendance.

PANASA have procured 100 Pro and 20 Semi Pro customized boards designed and manufactured by renowned Scrabble makers, Star Boards of Pakistan for use during both competitions.

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