President of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC), Engr Habu Ahmed Gumel, is among distinguished personalities in the world to be honoured by the Government of Japan with the most prestigious Foreign Recipients of the 2022 Spring Imperial Decorations.
Gumel, one of the revered sports administrators in the IOC will receive The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon, one of the highest order awarded in the name of His Majesty, the Emperor of Japan, in recognition of his contributions to promoting friendship between Japan and Nigeria through sports.
The NOC supremo becomes the fourth Nigerian to receive such Order from Japan, following Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, former Minister of Budget and National Planning, Prof Isaac Folorunso Adewole, former Minister of Health, as well as Prof Mohammed Gana Yisa, former Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to Japan.
In a Press release issued by the Embassy of Japan in Nigeria, it stated that the NOC President has been instrumental in building relations with the Japanese Olympic Committee and has contributed significantly to the promotion of bilateral cooperation between Japan and Nigeria over the years through the Olympic Games.
“His unwavering support of Japan’s bid was a major contribution to winning the vote to host the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, and since assuming the post of Olympic Committee Co-coordinator, he has visited Japan several times to attend and actively participate in discussions, thereby contributing to the success of the Games.
The NOC President was also lauded for his contributions to strengthening sports exchange between the two countries by sending Nigeria’s national Volleyball coach to Tsukuba University and dispatching volleyball coaches from Japan.