Nnanna chigozie Jeremiah a Para badminton player of the Abia State Para Badminton Team has become the 1st African badminton player to reach the quarter finals of the Para Badminton World Championship. He achieved this feat at NSDF Royal Beach Cliff BWF Para Badminton World Championships 2024 held in Thailand.

The Abia State badminton team part of team Nigeria in the para games held on February 19-25, 2024.

The development was revealed during a press conference held on Thursday in Umuahia, Abia State.

It was noted that the Jeremiah happened to be the first African and Nigerian to reach the quarter finals and got a rousing ovation from the World Para Badminton Administration Federation team as the first African to scale to the quarter finals and also ranked 18th best in the world.

During a press conference, Ekeoma Samuel, President Para-Badminton Association of Nigeria who also doubles as the Secretary of Abia State Badminton Association revealed that the present administration of Governor Alex Otti has sponsored the Para Badminton team to five international para tournaments held in Egypt, Thailand, Dubai, Uganda and Japan to represent Nigeria.

Dr. Ken kezie Anyikwa,
Director of Information represented the commissioner for sports in the press conference. During his briefing, he revealed that the Abia State Para badminton team represented Abia State in a competition at Abuja in the 2nd Para Games held in December 2023, and the Abia state para badminton team won 9 gold in the competition and in addition to the total medals in all tour including the five countries, 3 silver and 12 bronze were won by the para badminton team.

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He also added that one of the badminton athletes, Nnanna chigozie Jeremiah currently ranks 18th in the world and the best in Africa.

Dr Ken also revealed that apart from Nana Chigozie Jeremiah some other talented para athletes ranks well in the world and the best in Africa.

  1. Chinyere Okoro ranks 19th in para athlete ranking in the world.
  2. Eze Chukwuebuka Sunday ranks 24th in para athlete ranking in the world.
  3. Ijeoma Gift ranks 23rd in para athlete ranking in the world.
  4. Emmanuel Ohaeri ranks 33rd in para athlete ranking in the world.

Narrating further, Ekeoma also hinted that the team would be heading for Paris, France for another para badminton competition later this year after a possible clearance and approval from the regulatory body since all necessary requirements have been tendered.

Ekeoma also thanked the commissioner for sports and Director of sports for their administrative support and leadership qualities.

The Director of sports, Comrade Obioma George in his speech revealed that before the present administration of Governor Alex Otti, the para badminton team found it difficult to mobilize to represent the state in competitions until Governor Alex Otti stepped in. It was also revealed that even before he became governor of Abia State, he sponsored para athletes to competitions.

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“When they were struggling to travel to Enugu for an athletic championship in South East, they struggled, no support, no fund, by then his Excellency wasn’t the governor of Abia State and they ran to him , he sponsored that team hundred percent to and fro Enugu. Now that he is a governor are you not seeing the difference in sports? “Comrade Obioma said.

Comrade Obioma also hinted that the Abia State government single handedly sponsored the para athletes to Egypt, Thailand, Dubai, Uganda, and Japan in a struggle to represent Nigeria for the para Olympics.

Comrade Obioma attest that Para Badminton badminton Association in Abia State is one of the best out of 35 sports associations in Abia State.

Jeremiah, while speaking with newsmen expressed joy becoming the best para badminton athlete in Africa and 18th in the world. He also applauded the support of Governor Alex Otti on previous arrangements to see to the progress of his team. He also added that more is still needed for advanced preparation for him and his team mates.

” If I can be sponsored to different training camps for three months ahead of any competition, I think I will do better.” Jerimiah said.

Jerimiah also added that his target for more achievement is in Paris France this year during the Para Olympics Games.

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