Greek basketball player Giannis Antetokounmpo’s mother Veronika Nkem Antetokounmpo and younger brother Emeka-Alex Antetokounmpo received an honorary Greek citizenship in the presence on Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, at Maximos Mansion on Thursday.
With Giannis Antetokounmpo present, the premier gave his warm congratulations to the entire family, and told Veronika Antetokounmpo that she “raised wonderful children, who are characterized by dignity and moral values.”
“The Antetokounmpo family mirrors the Greece we want: a country that simply tries, and struggles, and overcomes difficulties, and keeps the family united. It is a Greece that makes us proud,” exclaimed Mitsotakis.
After an oath of citizenship ceremony, Mitsotakis and the Antetokounmpos talked about Greece and the US, where Giannis is NBA’s Most Valuable Player (MVP), and the trying times the family went through in the early years of Giannis’ childhood in the neighborhood of Sepolia in Athens, which they surpassed with the help of the gifted young boy’s love for basketball. They also mentioned the film about Giannis’ life, which was filmed entirely in Athens.
Talking to Giannis’ mother, Mitsotakis said their story is indeed one of optimism.
According to the official presidential decree, which was published in the Government Gazette on September 9, Veronika and Alex Antetokounmpo “have contributed to promoting Greece around the world, through the very high level of athletic performance of the children of the family, Giannis, Thanasis and Kostas, and have organized charitable actions and solidarity initiatives for disenfranchised social groups, proving the high sense of social responsibility that characterizes this great family of immigrants, which is a positive example of modesty, morality and the hard-work ethic.”
The citizenship oath was officiated by Interior Minister Makis Voridis.