Published On: Fri, Jan 12th, 2018

Raptors' Ujiri to Trump: 'If I grew up in a shithole, I am proud of my shithole'

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John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports / Action Images

Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri had some strong words regarding President Donald Trump’s latest racially charged controversy Friday.

“I went to visit the refugee camp in Dadaab (Kenya),” Ujiri told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski of a recent visit to Africa. “And I met good people and good families with plenty of hope. If those places are being referred to as shitholes, go visit those places, and go meet those people.”

Trump came under fire on Thursday when, in a meeting, he allegedly referred to various developing nations as “shithole countries” and asked why more immigrants don’t come from Norway. While Trump later denied making the remarks, Illinois Democratic Senator Dick Durbin – who was in the meeting – said he did.

Ujiri, 47, was born in Nigeria and moved to North Dakota in his early 20s to play college basketball. He’s since moved up the ranks to become one of the most highly regarded executives in the NBA. He remains heavily involved with the NBA Africa program and charitable endeavors.

“Just because someone lives in a hut, that doesn’t mean that isn’t a good person, that that person can’t do better, that person isn’t capable of being great,” Ujiri said. “And just because it’s a hut, whatever that means, doesn’t mean it’s not a home. God doesn’t put anyone someplace permanently. I am a living testimony to that. If I grew up in a shithole, I am proud of my shithole.”

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