The Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu has given a two bedroom flat at the Babatunde Raji Fashola Housing Estate, Iponri, to the First Olympic Gold Medalist in Nigeria and in Africa, Chief Mrs Chioma Ajunwa-Okpara, MON, in fulfillment of the pledge made by the government when she won the laurel 25 years ago.
Mrs Chioma who is now an Assitant Commissioner of Police in the Nigeria Police Force won gold in long jump during the Atlanta 96 Olympics games.
Presenting the keys to Mrs Ajunwa-Okpara at the Lagos House, Alausa Ikeja, Governor Sanwo-Olu said she would continue to be a reference point for not just sports, but also youths development.
“We’ll continue to use you as a testimonial to ensure that our female have a voice and representation in our sports organisations and that’s why we have made it compulsory that minimum of thirty percent female representation is implemented in all of our sporting board in Lagos State” the Governor said.
Governor Sanwo-Olu also presented cheques, ranging from 500 hundred thousand to five million naira to athletes from the State representing Nigeria at the Tokyo Olympics games next month and those who won laurels at the national Sports festival in Edo.
The Governor who announced that over the next one year, Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere would be upgraded into international standard, urged the athletes to put in their best and do the State proud knowing that they would be appreciated.
“We are doing this so that you will have a good footing and you know that your Government in Lagos State is fully appreciative of what you are going to do for us, that’s why we want to use this to stimulate you” Sanwo-Olu encouraged.
Earlier in her remarks, Mrs Ajunwa-Okpara had used the occasion to invite the Governor to the unveiling of her Foundation later this year to mark the silver jubilee of her Olympic win, which was Nigeria’s first individual Olympic gold medal, presented the Governor a replica of the medal.
She said “I deem it fit to go from State to State to pick young talents to nurture them to ensure that Nigeria maintain her position in the World of Sports, I want to use this 25th anniversary to launch Chioma Ajunwa Sports Development Centre before my God will call me and I am presenting you this foremost gold medal, to tell the whole World that there’s a Governor using Sports to build the youths, just as Lagos is the first State to start talent hunt”
While thanking the State for the honour, the Team Captain and award winning para-tennis player, Mr Ahmed Koleosho promised that they would make Lagos and Nigeria proud and appealed to the Lagos State government to give employment to athletes so that they would have something to fall back on after sports.