Preparations are in top gear for the maiden Warri Peace Marathon, billed for May 28 in the oil-rich city of Warri, Delta State.
Unlike some other marathon races organised in the country, where foreign athletes from Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda sweep thousands of dollars leaving the crumbs for their Nigerian counterparts, the 10km Warri marathon is open to only local athletes. It is for long distance runners and keep fit enthusiasts in Delta State and its environs.
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has permitted the race, while the Delta State government has pledged moral and financial support for a successful outing in the first edition.
This is the first time a marathon race is being organized in the state, which is known to be a catchment area for track and field athletes.
According to the promoter of the race, Mrs. Joyce Bozimo, “Things are shaping up for the event and we are looking forward to a good outing on May 28.
Speaking further, Bozimo said: “The major reason for the marathon is to propagate peaceful coexistence among the tribes and communities that make up Delta State. We also want to reassure the youths that there is much more to life and healthy living instead of taking to crime and violent conducts.”
Mrs. Bozimo disclosed that the Delta State government is keying into the event as part of its SMART agenda to move the state towards sustainable development and progress.
“We have a lot talented youths in the state and sports is one of the avenues the government is looking at as a vehicle to help build capacity for the youths. The government is also committed to peaceful coexistence in the state. So we are working together with the Delta Sports Commission to deliver a memorable marathon,” she stated.