Orok Duke, Chairman of the State Sports Commission, said on Sunday in Calabar that the 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. He said that this should be done through sustainable competitions.
Continuing, , Duke said that the late renowned sportswriter Bassey `Koma’ Ekpo will also be honoured through competitions to be organised by the commission.
It should be noted 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. He died at the age of 86 in Calabar, and was usually referred to as the father of modern Nigerian football.
Oyo served for 12 years as Secretary-General of Nigeria Football Association (NFA) and was a member of CAF Executive between 1974 and 1998.
Okon Asuquo Bassey, known as Hogan “Kid’’ Bassey, was the world featherweight boxing champion in 1957. He 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.
The Chairman, 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.