President Goodluck Jonathan, on Wednesday, splashed out N7m each to the handlers and N5m each to the members of the victorious 4×400m relay team at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games.
Team Nigeria’s silver medal at the event turned gold, following the International Olympic Committee’s decision to disqualify USA as a result of the dope infraction of Antonio Pettigrew.
Members of the relay team includes the late Sunday Bada (represented by his wife Adesumbo), America-based Jude Monye, Clement Chuckwu, Nduka Awazie, Fidelis Gadzama (UK-based) and Enefiok Udo-Obong (Lagos-based).
The two coaches are Innocent Egbunike and Solomon Abari.
Jonathan, who said he was in Sydney for the event as Deputy Governor of Bayelsa State said the team’s victory 13 years after the main event, justifies the saying that “there is no shortcut to fame.”
In addition to the cash, all the honourees will in due course be considered for a national honour after meeting one of the guidelines for the conferment of honours to sportsmen and women- which is getting an Olympic gold.
“What your experience has shown is that our sports men and women must endeavour to operate and compete within the rules of the game.
“They must resist any temptation to take a short cut to fame, adulation and wealth,” President Jonathan added.
“What has been proven by the gold medal that you have just received is that if we do things the right and honest way, truth will always prevail, no matter how long it takes.”
As reported by the News Agency of Nigeria, the athletes were decorated with the gold medals by the Nigerian representative in the International Olympic Committee, Mr. Abdul Gumel.