By Femi Adefioye, Lagos
Ahead of the Lagos City Marathon, many of the artisans, designers and events managers, who were excited to work for the Lagos State Government and other sponsors, thronged the Marathon Office at the Teslim Balogun Stadium last week.
Olukayode Thomas, the Head of Media, Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), said in a statement on Monday that they were seeking for how to fit into the race.
The statement said that they were keen to ask for the various jobs to be offered to ensure the race was more glamorous than the maiden edition.
It said that Yusuf Alli, the General Manager for the marathon, noted that in spite of fulfilling its sporting mission, the race would be economically viable.
It quoted Alli as saying that “the marathon office will officially be opened next week’’, revealing that there would be a special 5km race for the physically challenged athletes.
It said that Alli urged Charity organisations to take the unique advantage offered by the Lagos City Marathon to enlighten people about their works.
The statement added that during the last edition of the marathon, several Lagosians were empowered through the making of fliers, kits, bill boards and a host of other services.
The marathon also employed several others as volunteers that helped in making the marathon the second highest ranked race on the African continent in just a year.
Uche Njoku, a carpenter, employed for street branding during the 2016 marathon, praised the Lagos State Government, especially Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode and the management of Access Bank for the initiative.
He prayed that the marathon would be around for many years as it was giving back to the public in various ways.
Also, an American returnee, Taibat Johnson, urged other banks in Nigeria to emulate Access Bank to invest in avenues that would help in empowering people.
She said that engaging youths in sports would help a long way to dissuade them from vices.
“It will be nice to see more companies emulate Access Bank with initiatives like this, youths who otherwise would have been engaged in drugs and other vices will be gainfully engaged,’’ she said.
The 2nd Access Bank Lagos City Marathon now ranked among the top races in the world would hold on Feb. 11, 2017.