Team Nigeria has been charged by President Mohammadu Buhari to repeat the feats of previous Nigerian Olympians, stressing that they are standing on the shoulders of giants.
Buhari remembered the successes of previous Nigerian teams while officially unveiling Team Nigeria’s uniform for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, telling the athletes, “You will also carry with you the encouragement of the great exploits of Nigerian Olympians before you.”
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo represented the President at the occasion, which also served as a send-off ceremony for Team Nigeria. The ceremony, which took place at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, also marked the delegation’s formal handover to the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC).
Specifically, Nigeria will be represented by 58 athletes at the Olympic Games, while 22 athletes will feature in the Paralympic Games.
President Buhari reminded the team of luminaries such as Chioma Ajunwa, the first black African woman to win an Olympic gold medal in a field event when she won the gold medal in the long jump at the 1996 Olympics.
“The Super Eagles in 1996 won the gold medal for football; that was the team that had the greats like Austin Okocha, Celestine Babayaro, Daniel Amokachi (who was present at the event,) Sunday Oliseh, Taribo West, Kanu Nwankwo, Abiodun Obafemi, Emmanuel Amuneke, Emmanuel Babayaro, Garba Lawal, Joseph Dosu, Kingsley Obiekwu, Mobi Oparaku, Uche Okechukwu, Teslim Fatusi, Tijani Babangida, Victor Ikpeba, and Wilson Oruma —that was the year we defeated the world’s best footballing nations – Brazil and Argentina and we all held our heads high.”
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