In a bid to develop athletics in Osun State, and to create competitive platforms for long distance runners in the country, Mr Usman agreed to sponsor the maiden Ijesha Grand Marathon.
As parts of his contributions to the development of Ijeshaland, the Chairman BELTIJ LIMITED, Mr. Usman Oluwaremilekun Tijani, who is known for his philanthropic gestures again provend his undaunted love for his town and the youths by bringing home the maiden marathon race which is set to kick off come April, 2021.
Mr Usman while speaking at the unveiling ceremony of Ijesha Grand Marathon on Friday in Ilesha expressed confidence in Ijesha youths, adding that his passion for youths development was motivated by many things, some of which he attributed to how it is always the Eastern part of the country that is atop the list when it comes to Sports.
“I particularly took the sponsorship of this forthcoming ijesha marathon race upon myself because I have hope in our youths and believe that giving them a platform to live their dreams will go a long way in molding our land to what it should be.
“I do not always like it when most times it is only the Eastern Nigeria that is ranked first in the world of Sports. I feel we can do better too, but first, a platform is required and that prompted me to what we are here today for.
“I strongly believe that if we properly engage our youths with something better there won’t be issues like violence or other vices because everyone would have been adequately kept busy and that is why our company, BELTIJ LIMITED, apart from this competition opened room for interested ijesha youths in training and employing them accordingly.”
He also seized the occasion to call on other prominent Ijesha children in the diaspora to come home and develop their land.
Speaking also at the ceremony, Mr. Dare Esan, the Editor of Complete Sports magazine expressed his joy that such a huge sport is coming to their domain.
He spoke extensively on the relevance of competition with such magnitude in the advanced world, added that if such an event could be successively organized in a spade of two years there is hope that it would attract the attention of the international world.
Mr Esan further stated, “this is the first time in the history of Southwest that a town is hosting Marathon race and come to think of it, it is happening in Ijesha land. Those of us who know the in-depth of its value can proudly say that this is something good and I must commend BELTIJ LIMITED, for taking this on”
“I am sure that this will go international if it is maintained and having subsequent editions with the same tempo, of course, the attention of the advanced world will be caught and that will further be of more advantage to us”
In the same vein, the General Manager of Uniq FM/Freedom tv, Ilesha, Otunba Jare Ayo Martins, lauded BELTIJ for the zeal towards developing Ijesha land, expressed his faith in the forthcoming event that it surely will reshape the youths and guide also their aspirations towards life.
As the official partner in the forthcoming event, Otunba Jare Ayo Martins in furtherance said, “Uniq FM will provide all necessary media awareness and supports it so deserves. That is to show our heartfelt love as ever for ijesha land and we are ready to support whatever that is channeled towards its development”
The ceremony was graced by many eminent personalities among whom were royal fathers, Onileri of ileri; Arojo of irojo; the Vice President, Sportswriters Association of Nigeria, Seun Ajayi Obe, and others.