By Onochie Anibeze, in Berlin

Olusoji Fasuba is leaving Berlin happy with the way he ran here.The former World Indoor and current African Champion lost out in the second round here but was not disappointed.


“I ran without pains. I ran without injury, so I’m feeling good. I never expected to perform wonders here considering what injury reduced me to this season. I have only run about three races.

I’m not running fast enough now because  I changed my pattern, my training and everything. So, it’s like some kind of transformation. I’ll get better. I think that I’m happy with the way I have run. But if you are talking about motivation, we get nothing from Nigeria. It is sad. I spend so much on this sport without getting support from Nigeria. There is a new athletics federation. We hope that they will change things. But it is bad, very bad.

The way Nigeria treats their athletes is bad. Sometimes you wonder if it is a curse to represent Nigeria. We know what other athletes from other countries are getting. I broke the African record back to back three times. Nobody did anything for me. The country I did it for did not recognise me. I became the World Indoor Champion, Nigeria did nothing for me, not even a thank you. I set African record when I ran 9.85, nobody did anything for me. Is it when I die that they will do something for me?

We need encouragement. It mustn’t be football every time. If we were footballers, we know what would have accrued to us. But it is unfair. Sometimes they say Olu Fasuba complains so much. But have I lied? Am I not telling the truth? We can be world champions, we can be great but our country should encourage us. I make money running in Europe but I spend that money on the sport. I pay my coach, I spend a lot in vitamins and other medical attention that I receive. It simply means that I need support from my country. If that support is not there, then I don’t know how we can be world champions. It is not only about me.

What Obinna Metu is doing is great at his level. He can do better if supported. Look at the young boy, Ogho. If you ask now, you will find out that there’s no plan for them. It is sad, too sad to run for Nigeria. I hope they change. The earlier the better. Fasuba was pacified by a visit of a cousin, Prince Rufus Akin Oyebade, a Nigerian who is into estate and telecom business here.

“I have come to support my brother and Nigeria. The news we get from Nigeria has not been encouraging but we all have a duty to change our country,” said the man who has been living here for 18 years.


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