Urhobo union salutes Okagbare
Theophilus Onojeghen, Warri
The apex socio-cultural umbrella of Urhobo people, Urhobo Progress Union, has saluted sprinter Blessing Okagbare for breaking Mary Onyali's 22-year-old 200m African record at the 2018 Wes Kittley Invitational in Texas on Saturday.
Okagbare ran 22.04secs to erase Onyali's 22.07secs African record in Switzerland in 1996.
In a statement on Monday by its National Publicity Secretary, Abel Oshevire, the union urged Nigerian youths, particularly those from Niger Delta to emulate Okagbare.
The statement said, "We are very delighted by this great accomplishment which is a product of determination, hard work and discipline. Indeed, breaking the 22-year 200m African record is no mere feat.
"The Urhobo people, both at home and in the Diaspora, are very proud of you as a worthy daughter, more power to your elbow. By this great feat, Nigeria, and by extension Delta State, is once again on athletics spotlight because of your running prowess."
It added, "It is on this note that we wish to prevail on the Federal Government to provide the financial and technical assistance needed to harness the potential of the yet-to-be-discovered Okagbares in our beloved Nigeria to create a wider niche for our teeming sportsmen and women globally."