By Eseoghene Emuke
Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, has expressed excitement at the winning streak of Delta-born Africa’s reigning long jump queen, Ese Brume and sprint star, Raymond Ekevwo for both winning gold medals at the All African Games in Rabat, Morocco.
An elated Governor Okowa said described the Nigeria’s representatives at the ongoing competition as great ambassadors of the state, and thanked them for doing the state proud by their efforts.
The governor, in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, congratulated Ese for winning long jump gold at ongoing Games.
Brume, Commonwealth champion, leapt 6.69 meters on Thursday at the Moulay Abdellah Sports Stadium, to win the long jump event at the games which is in its 12th edition.
He commended the 23-year-old Ese Brume, who hails from Ughelli in Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta, for making the state and the nation proud.
He said that his administration was proud of the various feats achieved by Deltans in several endeavours of sports, assuring that the state government would continue to support the budding talents in sports as a strategy for building a stronger Delta.
According to him, “As a state, our greatest asset is not just in our rich oil and gas deposits but in human capital which we have continued to develop.
“And, we are delighted that Deltans have continued to maintain their winning streak and excelling in their chosen field of sports, thereby justifying government’s investment in the industry.
“In our quest to build a stronger Delta of our dream, we will continue to use sports as a tool for massive human capital development especially as the future of sports in Delta and Nigeria remains very bright.”
Brume, who is a student at the Eastern Mediterranean University in Northern Cyprus, has since qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
She became a Commonwealth Games Champion in 2014 and has won three consecutive Long Jump titles at the African Championships (2014, 2016 and 2018), making her the first athlete (male or female) in African championships history to accomplish such feat.
Similarly, Okowa while congratulating Raymond Ekevwo, for emerging Africa’s fastest man, noted that the people of the state were excited for emerging champion.
Ekevwo, who also hails from Agadama community in Ughelli North LGA, ran his all-time personal best of 9.96 seconds to win the men’s 100m event at the Games on Tuesday.
He noted that the athlete is a product of the state government’s constant and huge investment in sports development.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I congratulate an illustrious son of the State, Raymond Ekevwo, on his supersonic victory as winner of the 100m gold at the All African Games in Rabat, Morocco.
“As the state celebrates 28th anniversary of its creation, it is a thing of joy that a Deltan has once again, brought great honour to us by becoming Africa’s fastest man.
“His victory didn’t come as a fluke because, over the years, we have made concerted efforts at promoting sports development in our state by building sports facilities across the state”, the stated added.
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Ekevwo and another Deltan, Utseoritse Itsekiri, came first and third at the event.
Ekevwo had earlier in the year led Florida Central University to break the NCAA 4×100m record and ran the second fastest time of 10.02secs behind Divine Oduduru, another pride of Delta.