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Zambia 2022: Anambra-born scrabble guru solicits assistance

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By Mathew Onwuasoanya

AN ANAMBRA born icon in the game of scrabbles, Chinedu Thorpe  from Okija in Ihiala Local Government Area, is seeking assistance from the state government, public spirited individuals and sports lovers to help him participate in the 14th edition of African Scrabble Championship, 2022 coming up in Lusaka, Zambia, between October 21-24.

Taking National Light through a resume of his exploits in the game of scrabbles, during an interview today, Thorpe said he started playing scrabbles in 1973 while still in tender age.

According to him, since then, he has taken first positions in many events at both national and international championships, including Malta International Open Scrabble Championship, 2012 and Delta Open Scrabble Championship in 2008 as well as 2001 SCAN National Scrabble Championship in National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos among others.

Describing his chance of representing Anambra State, as a lifetime dream, he said that even when there are a couple of some others vying for honours for many states, only him is from South East and resides in the zone.

Thorpe also gave N1millin as the amount he needs to participate in the event, said he has a choice of paying the sum in two installments.

“I was invited to the national qualifiers as a wild card based on merit by virtue of past records or performances between September 28-29 at Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja. The top 10 were announced to be sponsored by Nigeria Scrabble Federation (NSF) where I placed 22nd only to leave with the belief that only the top 10 were needed and so the adventure may have ended.

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Unknown to me, the qualification had been thrown open to many Nigerians as can afford to get sponsorship for the event. But because my phone had issues and I was not reachable by phone, I had to wait till a competition in Lagos, last weekend. That’s where I learnt that anyone who could raise N1million could participate in the meet.

Even, there are some other people that did not participate in the qualification but are talking of going. That’s how I got to know that I could look for funding and go myself. The deadline is originally today for the payment of an initial N500,000.00 to NSF for subsidised air ticket and visa fee .while the remaining N500,000.00 kept ready for hotel bills, tournament registration and feeding,” he said.

Thorpe also commended the intervention of Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Anambra Newspapers and Printing Corporation, Sir Chuka Nnabuife, the deadline was extended to 2pm, tomorrow.

Calling on the state government to intervene and help fund the project, Thorpe expressed his confidence that Gov. Chukwuma Soludo will save the situation.

“I want to use the opportunity to solicit help from wealthy and charitable ndi Anambra to ensure that lack of fund does not torpedo the dream of bringing another honour to the state. I know that our sports loving governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo will once again come to the rescue as always does in times of difficulty,” he said.

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