Sports minister Solomon Dalung on Monday received the first Nigerian male and female marathoners to reach the finish line at the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon which took place in Lagos on Saturday.
In a statement, Nneka Anibeze, media aide to the minister, said Dalung gave N500,000 each to Iliya Pam and Deborah Pam who emerged as best Nigerian runners at the event, while he gave N100,000 each two sisters Damilola and Bimpe Oluwaseyi, who both completed the 10km race.
Dalung while presenting the monetary awards to the athletes congratulated the runners for making Nigeria proud. He said the money was to encourage them to train and perform better in the next edition.
He said, “This gesture is in fulfilment of the commitment we made to reward athletes who excel in their different fields. It is not acceptable for foreign athletes to always come and cart away the prize money. We have the facilities and we urge you to train harder so that in the next two editions you will be one of the first three runners.”
The President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria Ibrahim Gusau praised the minister for rewarding the athletes.