The Governor of Anambra state Charles Soludo has announced that the state government will take full custody of Tanya Okpala, a former Nigerian tennis champion found mentally unstable and wandering the streets of Awka, Anambra State capital.
In a video shared by @chude_ on X on Sunday, Tanya Okpala, whose father from Anambra and her mother from Belarus represented Nigeria in championships in the 1990s was spotted begging on the streets of Awka in a widely shared video.
The half-cast athlete of Igbo extraction appeared to be mentally sick and looked unkempt saying people always tell her to go back to your country.
“The whole world hears my story and they laugh at me. I do not know why they laugh at me. They will say ‘Go back to your country’. I am just tired. I am okay. Even though I am a half-cast I consider myself a black Igbo. I am going to the village tomorrow to look after my daughter until further notice,” Tanya said in the viral video.
“I was a former lawn tennis champion in Nigeria. I do not know if you are familiar with Tanya Okpala and Jacqueline Okwueze during those days. I played tennis for Nigeria and Africa.”
Reacting to the video in a post via X, Soludo governor Soludo, in a post via his X handle on Sunday night, said the Anambra State Government has now taken custody of Ms Okpala.
The governor revealed that the state government will rehabilitate Okpala and ensure her family.
“Tanya Okpala (Fmr Tennis champion) is now in the custody of the Anambra State Government. She was with the Commissioner of Women’s Affairs when my wife spoke with her on the phone. My government will ensure her rehabilitation and fruitful reunion with her daughter and family.” Governor Solaudo said on his X account.