Key Issues

Nigeria: Athletes Turn to Crowd Funding to Get to Rio

Lack of fund is seriously threatening Nigeria’s participation in the forthcoming Rio Olympics in Brazil after the country’s athletes were sent letters asking them to pay their way to South America.

The Games kick off in ten days and Nigeria’s preparations to this year’s events have been nothing but shambolic with Athletes taking to social media and crowd funding site to seek financial assistance in order to reach Brazil.

Yesterday, track queen, Regina George, set up a ‘go fund me’ Campaign in order to raise funds to get herself to the Olympic.

Ms. George, the Nigerian-Venezuelan track star, who mentioned that she has faced financial difficulty, reached out to family, friends and fans for support.

“I was just been told that we will have to pay our own way to the Olympics this year. Sadly this is such short notice for me to come up with the money.” She wrote on twitter.

Her fundraising goal is 4000 US Dollars and as at press time she had only gotten $1895 donated to the cause.

George is not the only Rio Olympics hopeful to be using the crowd funding platform for personal fundraising. Antwon Hick, a Nigerian Hurdler, set up a campaign as well, Hick’s campaign is set to raise 5000 US Dollars.

Nigeria’s fastest man and 100m Champion, Seye Ogunlewe isn’t left out of the situation as he also made pleas on social media calling on well-meaning Nigerians and corporate bodies to come to their aid.

: “Just so everyone knows. We all got that message saying we should get our own tickets to Rio, #help Nigerian athletes.”

Shot-putter, Nikki Okwelogu also set up her own account as well and she has N235, 000 ($635) as at the time of this report. The athlete said she detests asking for help but the situation has reached ‘boiling point.’ “I really hate to ask but I will appreciate anything” Okwelogu noted.

It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari, had last Tuesday, while hosting the Olympics contigents in Aso Villa, assured that his administration would ensure that the fund budgeted for the Rio Olympics is released without further delay but it remains unclear where the blockage is emanating from at this time.

Source: Daily Trust.