Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday inaugurated the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba, urging Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, to effectively utilise the facility.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Obasanjo, who was in the state on a two-day visit, also inaugurated other road projects in Agbor in the state.

The former President, while noting that the stadium might not mean much to the ordinary man, said the gains of the project could however not be over-emphasised.

“No one can have a sound mind and sound body without exercising. The stadium is a veritable source of money for the state and the people of Asaba and environs,’’ he said.

Obasanjo added that the essence of the structure would be defeated if the state government failed to through it train the young people by catching them young.

“The thinking of the people is `what are you doing with the stadium?’ And to the ordinary man, the importance is not appreciated.

“But the importance is in having a sound mind in a sound body. I have always played squash and I have a squash court in my house to keep fit; it is very important that you exercise.

“In today’s world, there is virtually nothing from which you cannot make money. Sports tourism will make the economy of the state strong and the people of Asaba will grow their economy.

“We must not just have the stadium, we must utilise the facility to bring up the young ones by catching them young.

“You must recruit those that would be trained and build a hostel where they stay to be trained and if you do this the state will develop.

“Sixteen years ago, I came here to lay the foundation of this stadium and today I am here to inaugurate it. I hope to come back to see the hostel you have built to train the youths,” he said.