Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo has awarded new IBF world lightweight champion Richard Commey 50,000 cedis and a new car.
On February 2, Commey knocked out Russia’s Isa Chaniev in the second round to win the vacant IBF title and establish himself as a major player in the 135-pound division.
In doing so, Commey became the ninth Ghanaian to win a world title, joining David “DK Poison” Kotey, Azumah Nelson, Nana Yaw Konadu, Ike Quartey, Alfred Kotey, Joshua Clottey, Joseph Agbeko and Isaac Dogboe.
Commey is the only current world champion from Ghana. He returned to Ghana only several days after winning the world title and received a hero’s welcome at Kotoka International Airport in Accra. Throngs of people from his native Bukom sojourned to the airport. Commey then headed back to Bukom in a motorcade, where he was greeted by countless more joyous onlookers.
The victory caught the eye of President Akufo-Addo, who Tweeted a congratulatory message:
I send warm congratulations to Richard Oblitey Commey (@RichardCommey) on his well-deserved victory over Isa Chaniev, and, thereby, becoming world IBF lightweight champion. Best of luck to him in the coming years. We are proud of him!! ??
— Nana Akufo-Addo (@NAkufoAddo) February 3, 2019
On Monday, the president met with Commey, along with Ghana Boxing Authority President Peter Zwennes, at Jubilee House to congratulate the new champion personally. President Akufo-Addo also presented Commey with the sum of money and a new Toyota Corolla.
“They [the Sports Ministry] are going to buy you a car, they are in the process of arranging it from the Ministry,” said the president.
“They will get you a nice Toyota car,” he continued. “The office of the President is also adding Gh50,000 to it. It is a small token of our esteem and admiration for the honour you have brought our nation. Keep it up.”
Commey thanked the President for his support and also requested that the same support be extended throughout Ghana boxing.
“Some boxing managers and coaches enter into agreements without the consent of the boxer,” Commey told Akufo-Addo. “This phenomenon does not help boxers. The government, the Sports Ministry and the Ghana Boxing Authority must look at that aspect and deal with it. If dealt with, the country will have more world champions.”
Commey is currently sidelined by an injured right hand. He is expected to return to the ring in the late spring to defend his title.