By Ben Efe
Renowned Nigerian athletics coach, Tobias Igwe has cried out to Nigerians to rescue him from penury and rehabilitate his coaching career as inactivity is killing him slowly.
Toblow, as he is fondly called by his admirers, lamented that after he was relieved of his coaching job by the Enugu State government he went to Abia State where he was retired as assistant director but his dues were not paid. According to him he is yet to settle down with a job, adding that because of his poor state of finances he has been unable to discover and groom young athletes like he always did in the past.
“This is my sixth year I have gone on without a paid job. I was laid off without benefits by the Enugu State government and Abia my home State. I am just appealing to Nigerians most especially the Eastern State governors to help me with a job.
“I still have passion to coach, but in my condition I cannot do that. I am more concerned with how to survive. I need rehabilitation; it is not when I pass on people will come to my aid.”
He disclosed that he was even more pained that there are talents in the country, but he is unable to take action to discover athletes that will do the country proud.
“I am determined more than ever to coach kids most especially from the grassroots. There are talents in the country and if only I can sort myself out I will be much ready.
“I am so inspired by the 74- year- old coach Ans Botha who helped South Africa’s Wayde van Niekerk break 400m world record. Look at people like Glen Smith who is Usain Bolt’s coach, these are my contemporaries, their countries still look up to them, but it is not so here.”
Coach Toblow is credited with discovering the likes of Mary Onyali-Omagbemi, Tina Iheagwam, Davidson Ezinwa, Clement Chukwu, Charity Opara and other athletes who made the country proud in the past.