Cross River To honour Hogan Bassey and Orok Oyo

The Cross River Government will immortalise Nigerian boxing legend , Hogan Bassey and the sporting administrator , Oyo Orok Oyo and other
living and dead sports heroes.

Orok Duke , Chairman of the State Sports Commission , said on Sunday in Calabar that the sports heroes will be remembered through sustainable competitions.

The late renowned sportswriter Bassey ` Koma ’ Ekpo will also be honoured through competitions to be organised by the commission , Duke said.

NAN reports that Oyo was the first Nigerian member of the Executive Committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF ), and he died on Sept . 10 , 2008.

Oyo, who died at the age of 86 in Calabar , was popularly referred to as the father of modern Nigerian football.

He served for 12 years as Secretary -General of the then Nigeria Football Association (NFA ) and was a member of CAF Exco between 1974 and 1998 .

Okon Asuquo Bassey , popularly known as Hogan “ Kid’’ Bassey , was the world featherweight boxing champion in 1957.


Bassey was the youngest boxer to win the national flyweight title in 1950 at the age of 18 while in secondary school .

The boxing legend was a Member of the British Empire (MBE ) in 1958 and Member of the Order of Niger (MON ) in 1979.

Duke further said Edidiong Odiong , a former Nigerian junior champion in the 400 metres in 2013 and now running for Bahrain , would also be honoured .

Odiong won gold in 200 metres for Bahrain, her adopted country, at the IAAF World U- 20 Championships in Poland when she was 19 years old .
Duke also said Offiong Edem, a female tennis legend , and the late John Okon Ene, a former Nigerian international footballer, would be honoured through tournaments organised by the commission .

Duke , who also unveiled the programme for Gov . Ben Ayade Under- 15 Football Tournament for Secondary Schools, said no fewer than 254 secondary schools had registered to participate .

NAN reports that the tournament is to begin on Monday across 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs ) in the three senatorial districts of the state .
Duke said the finals of the tournament would involve six schools at the U. J . Esuene Stadium in Calabar between March 28 and March 31 .

He said the opening match for schools in the Calabar Municipality would kick off at the U.J . Esuene Stadium on Monday.

“ The essence of the competition is to engage the youths and foster peace . Adequate arrangements have been made for participants . This we can assure the parents of these young people .’’

Ekanem Ekpenyong , a Commissioner in the Sports Commission, also told NAN there would be N10 , 000 cash prize each for winners of the Best Defender, Best Midfielder and Highest Goal Scorer awards .

He said the prizes would be in honour of Christopher Edem, John Okon Ene and Bassey ` Koma ’ Ekpo respectively.

Credit: NAN


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