Following the National Basketball Association(NBA) Global Basketball Championship, The Delta State Governor, Sen.(Dr) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa has expressed his heartfelt pleasure as the Nigerian Basketball star, Miss Merit Atebe-Innocent was included in the Africa team at the 2nd Edition of the NBA Global Basketball Championship that took place in Florida, United States of America.
The Africa team has participated in the Championship at the Junior World Tournament which was held between August 6 to 9, 2019. However, the team lost to Latin America side at the semi-finals.
Gov. Okowa congratulated the 13-year old Delta born basketball star, in a statement released by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Olisa Ifeajika on Saturday, August 24, 2019.
Miss Merit Atebe-Innocent hails from Oyede, Isoko North Local government area of Delta State. She is a student of St. Jude Secondary School, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State where she plays basketball.
Miss Atebe-Innocent and Bisola Badmus were the Nigerian girls in the Africa Girls’ team at the championship while Hassan Amer and Emmanuel Owonibi were in the Boys’ team.
Gov. Okowa said the State government is always ready to provide support to the youths to be excellent in sports, in order to stop violent activities in the State and Nigeria at large.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I congratulate an illustrious daughter of the State, Miss Merit Atebe-Innocent, on her inclusion in the Africa team that participated at the second edition of NBA Global Basketball Championship in Orlando, Florida.
“Her exploits in the tournament justified her inclusion and we are glad that she lived up to expectation by adding seven points and 10 rebounds in the African team’s semi-final 44-36 loss to their Latin American girls.
“As a leading state in sports, it is a thing of joy that a Deltan was among the four selected from Nigeria to represent Africa in the global championship.
“As we build on our Stronger Delta vision, we will continue to encourage our youths to take to sports as a means of livelihood and as a way out of vices, poverty and unemployment.”