Nigerian ambassador to Japan, Ambassador Abubakar Hussaini Moriki, is proud of Team Nigeria following their remarkable feat at the ongoing Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.
Folasade Oluwafemiayo yesterday increased Nigeria’s medals haul at the Games by winning the gold in the women’s -86kg powerlifting competition.
The 36-year-old won the event with a bang, setting a new world record, as well as Paralympic record with a lift of 152kg.
The silver medalist in the women’s 75kg event at the 2012 Games lifted 147kg in her first attempt, and 149kg in the second attempt. She went on to take a lead with a 151kg lift in her third attempt, leaving her opponents bewildered as she went on to lift 152kg in the final attempt.
Team Nigeria now has three gold and two bronze all coming from powerlifting and are now in the 21st position on the medal table.
Speaking to Nigerian journalists in Tokyo on Monday, Ambassador Moriki, applauded Team Nigeria’s special athletes, saying the athletes have proved to the world with their performance that Nigeria is a force to reckon with in sports.
“I’m delighted that we have just won a gold medal in powerlifting. The lady set a world record by lifting 152kg and her closest rival was about 10kg behind. That record as far as I know and as far as the officials have been saying, is a world record.
“It means that, as a country, we are really into sport and can win gold at any event of this nature. Nigeria is not a country to be taken loosely when competing in international tournaments of this nature.
“The name Nigeria was registered on the gold medal table and the National anthem of the country was also sung. So, this itself is a great huge success, which I as an ambassador of Nigeria, is delighted that this happened while I’m serving,” he said.
The diplomat who promised to host the athletes to victory party at the end of the competition, is confident that Team Nigeria will win more gold medals before the Games climaxes on Sunday, September 5.
“I’m happy that we have been winning gold and many more gold medals are likely to come.
“We hosted the athletes to the just concluded Olympics and then the Honourable Minister was here, if it is necessary and we deem it fit, we also have the intention to honour them. We have been honouring participants in the Olympics and so what reason do we have not to honour the Paralympians.”