Buhari, Sports Minister In Shock, Over Nigeria’s Latest Olympics World Record

By Post Nigeria September 18, 2016 13:58

Buhari, Sports Minister In Shock, Over Nigeria’s Latest Olympics World Record

After being denied her monetary incentive, when President Muhammadu Buhari rewarded Nigeria’s outstanding sportsmen and women in January, Lauritta Onye, shamed the Federal Government, by winning a gold medal at the ongoing Rio Paralympic Games in Brazil.

Onye, a 1.25ft tall athlete, who specializes in field events discus and shot-put, has remained undaunted, despite the humiliation, as she lifted Nigeria’s name, by clinching a gold medal.

Onye, a native of Ikeduru in Imo State, stunned bookmakers, and keen Paralympics watchers, when she lifted Nigeria’s name, by clinching a gold medal at the ongoing Rio Paralympic Games in Brazil.

Team Nigeria, got her latest medal in the women’s shot-put event, through Onye, after her fourth throw of 8.40 meters, to secure the gold medal.

Her gold medal win, therefore, sets a new world record, after breaking her previous world record of 7.72 meters, set at the 2015 IPC world athletics championships in Doha.

Onye’s tale could be likened to that of the proverbial stone that was rejected, which later formed the bedrock.

The feat at Doha, earned her a spot among outstanding athletes that were rewarded by President Buhari, only for she and her Coach, Patrick Anaeto, as well as Secretary of the Para-Athletics Federation of Nigeria, Olabisi Aziz, to be shunned.

Though, officials of the Sports Ministry collected their bank account numbers, with a promise to pay them their money, they however, refused to pay.

“On that day, I was called to have a handshake with the President, but later they realized my name was not mentioned, but my picture was on the brochure of the athletes that should be rewarded. My picture was the last.

“They didn’t announce the amount they will pay us, but the woman from the Sports Ministry who collected my account number, that of my Coach, and the PFN Secretary, is yet to get back to us,” Onye, who had also made her mark in the Nollywood industry, told Saturday Sun Sport.

She added, that she had planned to use the money to prepare for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio, but found preparations difficult, and appealed to the Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung, to help her in recovering her dues.

Nevertheless, several months before the Rio Paralympic Games, the money never came, and Onye had to rely on begging to see her through.

Indeed, through hard work and determination, she made the cut in the 23-man athletes that are representing Nigeria at the Rio Paralympics.

Today, Onye is living her dreams. She had once again proved that determination and hard work pays, even if rejected or disappointed by failed promises.

Onye’s medal is Nigeria’s seventh at the ongoing Rio games.