The Governor of Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun, has felicitated the world boxing champion, Anthony Joshua, for reclaiming his tittles, saying he has made Nigeria proud and had restored confidence that the nation will be great again.
Abiodun said the Ogun State-born Joshua has displayed the “Ogun standard of excellence” by reclaiming all the titles in the re-match with his opponent, Andy Ruiz Jr.
The governor, in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin on Sunday, said, “I congratulate Anthony on this successful outing.
“May he continue with the winning streak ad infinitum.
“The world heavyweight championship in Saudi Arabia on Saturday night ,kept sleep away from the eyes of many admirers of AJ worldwide, especially, people of Ogun State.
“The Sagamu-born boxer outclassed Andy Ruiz Jr over 12 rounds to compensate them and reassured us that hard work pays.
“My joy is unquantifiable; our government has always classified sports as not only a unifying factor but [also as] socio-economic imperative.”
The governor attributed the rematch outcome to the manifestation of God’s love for the people of the state who, he said, prayed ceaselessly for AJ that the nightmarish experience of New York earlier in the year be reversed.
He added, “God still answers prayers. We return all glory to God almighty for granting our hearts’ desires and ceaseless prayers for our brother, Anthony Joshua, to regain the IBF, WBA and WBO titles.
“All of us in the state, irrespective of our religious affiliations, prayed for his success.
“That the feat happened in Saudi Arabia doubly excites me. God answered us.”
He also lauded Joshua for his determination, hard work, resilience and focus, which he described as virtues ingrained in the DNA of Ogun people.
According to the governor, Joshua has made us proud by exhibiting these traits and the ‘can-do spirit’ of Ogun people.
“This victory should inspire other aspiring champions of Ogun State origin to do more.
“On our part, we will provide the necessary incentives to all our ambitious young men and women to become world champions in all considerable areas of sports, not only in boxing.
“We are poised to fix our stadia, upgrade facilities, train sportsmen and women, motivate coaches and develop talents, starting from the grassroots.”
He called on all stakeholders to be concerned about hunting for, and, developing talents.
Abiodun noted that with sports, more people would be pulled out of poverty, while insecurity, social strife and crimes would be kept in check.