Ogba, others commend Ambode, Access Bank for Lagos City Marathon
President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), Solomon Ogba has commended the Governor of Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode, for reviving full marathon in Lagos, with the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.
The AFN boss also commended the sponsor of the race, Access Bank for keying into a project that will showcase Lagos landmarks to a global audience, boost local business, generate employment, enhance a healthy lifestyle and create fun for the family.
The last time Lagos had a full marathon was 30 years ago (1985), and Ogba recalled that the AFN made several attempts to sell the idea of a full marathon to past government, but were turned down.
“We thank Governor Ambode, who not only embraced the idea, but he is working round the clock to ensure it success,’’ he said.
Ogba urge Nigerians who are mistaking the culture of marathon running with usual track and field meets to cure their ignorance by doing a search on marathon and its benefits to host cities,
Marathon is not about a Nigerian winning or not, though I would be delighted if a Nigerian win in Lagos and go on to win elsewhere, but it is more than that. New York, Dubai, Berlin, Boston, Paris, Durban, Accra and several other marathons are not won by their citizens, but the one day event generate thousands of jobs in the host cities and millions of dollars are made.
London Marathon is the biggest one-day event for raising money for charities in the world. It is in the Guinness Book of Records and I urge Nigerians to seek information before making comments.”
Babatunde Adewale, an engineer who has ran some road races and marathon around the world, is delighted that his city (Lagos) will host a marathon in February 2016.
“I have done marathons around the world. I was not born in 1985 when Lagos hosted its last full marathon, so I thank Gov. Ambode for giving me the opportunity to witness one in my city. I will run for the fun and I am hoping to finish in four hours,” he said.
Stella Udoh, a banker, who hopes to work as a volunteer, thank Ambode for giving Lagos a marathon. “I have been to Dubai, New York and London and I am happy my city will join the list of marathon destinations in February 2016. I can’t wait for the day and I will be happy to work as a volunteer.
Lagos is one of the few mega cities in the world without a marathon and I am glad Ambode has made it happen. South Africa has 23 marathons and road races and Lagos does not have, even Accra and Cotonou have marathon. I really commend Ambode for this initiative,” Udoh said.
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