Eko 2012: Uko and Imhoaperamhe take sprint titles at Nigeria National Sports Festival

Athletes jostle for positions in the men's 5000m at Eko 2012/ Photo: LOC

Alphonsus Peace Uko from Ondo State and Nicholas Imhoaperamhe from Rivers State last night won the 100m women and men titles respectively at the ongoing 18th National Sports Festival (EKO 2012) inside the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos.

Peace Uko breast the tape ahead of the other competitors after returning a time of 11.57 seconds a far cry from the meets record of 11.36secs set in Kada 2009. Margaret Benson from Delta came second in a time of 11.61 seconds while Mirian Edet Bassey settled for bronze in 11.71 seconds.

In the men's race, Nicolas Imhoaperamhe came tops in a time of 10.51 seconds ahead of compatriot and defending champion Chukuama Onyeaku (10.65 seconds). Edo state's Victor Ikahazobor settled for the bronze medal in a time of 10.72 seconds.

In some other races also decided on Wednesday there was an upset in the 10,000m Women's event Deborah Pam of Delta state who has been undefeated in close to two years was unseated by Lagos state's Amina Olowora.

Olowora had earlier won the 5,000m gold and on Wednesday kept her promise of adding the 10,000m gold.

For Pam who emerged tops amongst her Nigerian counterparts at the 2012 Obudu Mountain race, her second place finish was a huge disappointment.

"I am not happy with the Silver medal," Pam told AthleticsAfrica.com. "She (Amina) won the 5000m and I decided that I must win the 10,000m gold but I did not again," Pam lamented.

Also on Wednesday the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja got a rare gold on the tracks, as Henry Okorie beat all comers to win the 400m hurdles event gold medal.  Okorie finished in a time of 53.16sec to finish tops and win gold for Abuja while Fredrick Anyadike from Imo finished second in a time of 54.30 second while the FCT again got bronze as Bello Thomas finished third in a time of 54.75 seconds.

Speaking with AthleticsAfrica.com after the victory in the 400m hurdles event, Okorie said he was happy with Gold won for the Federal Capital Territory.

"I am happy to win Gold, it wasn't a easy race. But I give God the glory for making me finish tops".

Okorie added that his dream remains competing for Nigeria at the highest level which is the Olympics.

Meanwhile Mujidat Adekoya added to the medal haul of Delta as she won the 400m hurdles women event in a time of 57.93 seconds. Folake Balogun from Bayelsa won silver 59.79 while Ann Nwaogu got the bronze medal for Rivers State.

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