Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has praised the state female football team, Bayelsa Queens, for successfully defending the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Tingo Cup.
Bayelsa Queens defeated Rivers Angels 5-4 on penalties on Wednesday at Asaba, Delta State.
The governor said the team has consistently made the state proud by winning several laurels.
A statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, quoted him as giving the commendation on Thursday shortly after the weekly Prosperity Walk at the Samson Siasia Sports Complex in Yenagoa, the state capital.
Senator Diri noted that Bayelsa Queens had also brought glory not only to the state but to the country as a whole.
He recalled that in 2022, after winning the national women league, the team participated in the West African Union (WAFU) zonal elimination and emerged champions to qualify for the African Women Champions League held in Rabat, Morocco where they placed third.
He said: “Our female football team, Bayelsa Queens, has made us proud again. They first won the Aiteo/FA Cup, which is now called NFF Tingo Cup, in 2021. They have just retained the trophy at Asaba.
“They participated in the female champions league in Africa and came out third. They also emerged winners in WAFU after coming first in Nigera.
“Football is an international game that is money spinning. If you do well you will play at national and international levels.
“We are proud of your achievements. While we celebrate you, you are also promoting yourselves. You are equally making good money for yourselves and for your state.”
Diri equally commended the male team, Bayelsa United, for its achievements, particularly for gaining promotion to the premier division last year.
According to the state’s helmsman, there were fears that Bayelsa United would be relegated but the team was able to remain in the premier league.
He expressed optimism that next football season, Bayelsa United would redouble its effort and compete to represent Nigeria.
The governor also congratulated Arise News correspondent, an indigene of the state, Ovieteme George, who won the Reporter of the Year (Television) at the recent Nigeria Broadcasting Awards.
He said George also brought good image to the state.
A minute of silence was observed in honour of the four supporters of Bayelsa Queens Football Club who died in a road accident on June 11.