Gbassa pledges continued support for golf tournament, considers sports important for greater unity
The Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Jason Gbassa, weekend, pledged continued support of the Command for the game of golf, while giving closing remarks of the three-day 6th Annual FOC, Golf Tournament, which took place at the Dolphin Golf Club, Navy Town Ojo.
Gbassa upheld the power of sports in fostering unity and necessary strength between civilian and military communities for the benefit of national development.
“We live in a world that is increasingly difficult to succeed in any undertaking if you fail to forge alliance. And so, one of the age tested means of building bridges is through the use of sport, because of its important role in the life of an individual, organisation and nation.
“The objective of the tournament is to use the game of golf to foster interaction and understanding between our civilian and military communities for national cohesion and development amidst prevailing security concerns in the country.
“The dynamics of our realities today has shown that no single individual or organisation has the magic wand for the myriads of challenges the contemporary world presents,” he said.
Appreciating the Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Awwal Gambo, for giving direction on which all activities of the Command are carried out, Gbassa said the Command has worked remarkably at ensuring security in the nation’s maritime domain.
He, however, noted that while there is room for improvement, relationship-building with stakeholders beyond the traditional interagency collaboration remained necessary.
For the FOC West, the game of golf imbues the resilience an individual requires to stay committed to service and development of fatherland.
His words: “I have also discovered that the game of golf amongst other things helps imbibe three basic characters, which are humility, empathy and patience.
“If you are not humble you cannot serve. If you cannot empathize, you cannot foster friendship, and if you are not patient, you may find it difficult to be loyal. These are all values essential for duty and service to the nation.
“Thus, every opportunity and avenue to promote these qualities is considered a worthy course to me, hence, my commitment to the Dolphin Golf Club through sponsoring this tournament.”
Speaking on qualification for membership, Gbassa said: “The club is open to our personnel, whatever is their category. There is room for our families; for our wives, for our children. As a command we encourage everyone; it is open to outsiders too.”
He encouraged the golfers to seize the opportunity to improve on their skills, make more friends and enlarge their network.
Speaking also, Captain of the Dolphin Golf Club, Kronaka Uti, described the tournament as very successful, with close to 100 participants playing, compared to only about 70 participants in 2020.
He also disclosed that “…the Nigerian Navy has the highest number of professionals playing in Nigeria today- about 10 professionals, and they showcased their latest techniques- swings.”
Winners in the different categories went home with various prizes including refrigerator and standing fans.