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Okpekpe race organiser dedicates road race pioneer award to Gov Obaseki

Organiser of the historic Okpekpe international 10km road race, Mike Itemuagbor has dedicated his award as the pioneer of world acclaimed road races in Nigeria to the Governor of Edo state, Godwin Obaseki.

Itemuagbor’s effort at organising the first World Athletics label road race in West Africa was recognised at the SportsVille awards on Sunday.

According to the organiser, Itemuagbor was honoured because “the Okpekpe 10km road race which you pioneered has not only succeeded in changing the face of road races in the country but has also put Nigeria in the world map of countries with internationally accredited road races.”

In his acceptance speech, Itemuagbor says the race would not have become the first World Athletics label road race in Nigeria nay West Africa without the huge role played by the people and government of Edo state led by the Governor, Godwin Obaseki.

”Without the road infrastructure in Okpekpe this would not have been possible to organise and huge credit must go to His Excellency, the Governor of Edo state, Godwin Obaseki who, as head of the economic team of the former Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole insisted on the construction of the road to Okpekpe and its environs despite criticisms that government was constructing roads from somewhere to nowhere.

”I am delighted we have been able to change the narrative as the road has not only opened up the Okpekpe community but has also placed Edo state and Nigeria on the map of the world as a destination of sort for sports,’ said Itemuagbor.

The Okpekpe race organiser personally handed over his plague to the deputy governor of Edo state, Comrade Philip Shaibu who was also honoured at the event.

Itemuagbor also hailed the Youth and Sports Development Minister, Sunday Dare as a breath of fresh air in sports administration at the national level.

”Chief Dare has greatly helped in also changing the narrative about sports administration in Nigeria and in getting the President to classify sports as business. He is leaving a huge foot sprint on the sands of time,’ said Itemuagbor.

The eighth edition of the silver label Okpekpe international 10km road race will hold on May 28 this year in Okpekpe.

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