The Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode has revealed plans to invest in training of Nigerian athletes to compete with elite athletes all over the world for the grand prize of the Lagos City Marathon.
"I know we are going to do this again next year and so come Saturday 9th February, 2019, we are going to have a bigger marathon and bigger prizes", Governor Ambode said.
The "king" of soccer Okocha was excited before the start of the 10 km marathon race in the ancient City of Lagos.
"I was here last year and I enjoyed myself and there is no way I would have missed it this year, so that is why I am here, " he said. This year, we have over 100 elite athletes coming and we have nearly over 20,000 people running.
"My promise to Nigeria is this; I'm exhausted of giving this award to the East Africans and so Lagos State is going to commit professional coaches and then we will go to Jos and then come back in two years' time to give them (East Africans) fight for their money", the Governor said.
His time is three minutes better than the record set by another Kenyan, Abraham Kiptum in the second edition of the 42km annual race held a year ago.
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"We are exhausted of foreigners, most especially Kenyans coming to win this Marathon".
"We will be organising programmes and build on the success of the marathon to enhance our athletes and to prepare them for the next edition, " he said.
A Nigerian, Henry Adeniran, who is participating for the second time, said the crowd was not as much as a year ago. "But we are exhausted of presenting trophies to the East Africans, we will continue in our quest to commit resources to training our Nigerian athletes for them to also win the marathon", the governor stated.
Dignitaries expected to grace the Lagos Access City Marathon include the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. -Gen.
Besides, Governor Ambode lauded the Nigeria's bobsled team comprising the trio of Seun Adigun, Ngozi Onwumere, Akuoma Omeoga and Simidele Adeagbo who would be making history to become the nation's first women's bobsled team at the 2018 Winter Olympics, saying it was a proud moment for all Nigerians.