Former President of the Para Powerlifting Federation, PPF, of Nigeria Ms Queen Uboh has expressed sadness over the death of one of her athletes and Rio Olympic gold medalist, Ndidi Nwosu.
Uboh, who broke the news in tears on Monday night, said she was in deep shock after she learned of the death of Ndidi.
The former President, who resigned in January 2020 after the World Cup which she hosted in Abuja, said Ndidi Nwosu had been ill since after the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, where the deceased won gold in the women’s 73kg weight category and set a new record.
According to Uboh, “the news of her sickness was conveyed to me in 2019 and I actually paid for the two surgeries she had in Imo state. She was doing well after the surgery, but suddenly relapsed after a while.
“I sent her some money when she got better, to start a petty business but she couldn’t sustain it because her health deteriorated again.”
Ms Uboh, who led the powerlifters to the first two World Cups to be hosted in West Africa, which was in Lagos and Abuja, including the Lagos Invitational Cup and the African qualifiers, described Nwosu’s death as a colossal loss.
She added: “I am pained by the death of Ndidi Nwosu. She was a very disciplined athlete and a bit on the quiet side and that was why many people didn’t know her even as an Olympic gold medalist.
“This is a very sad moment for me even as a former President of the Powerlifting Federation, because they were like my children and they all called me mummy. The Para Powerlifting family has lost a great talent.
“She was one of those we were also looking up to give us a medal at the upcoming Olympics in Tokyo. This is also a big loss to the World body. I pray that God will grant her eternal rest and give her family, the fortitude to bear the loss.”
Ndidi Nwosu was born on June 24, 1978 and won three gold medals in the National Sports Festival hosted by Imo State.
She also won gold at the Congo Brazzaville All Africa Games in 2015 and bronze in the International Paralympic Committee Asian Championship.
She also won Silver in Mexico at the IPC Championship in 2017 and the European Championship.
She is survived by her husband Ikechukwu Nwosu and two children.