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Athletes Commission to assist marathoners

Leemisa Thuseho

THE Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) Athletes Commission this week met local marathoners to discuss ways in which they can be assisted to handle Covid-19 induced challenges.

The meeting comes after a group of athletes made a clarion on different media platforms.

Most athletes, including marathoners, have not participated in any competitions since March this year and have therefore not earned any income.

Veteran marathoner Mabothile Lebopo told the Sunday Express that they are hopeful for positive results after the meeting.

He said they were forced to take to the media after failing to get any assistance from the government.

“Most runners earn their leaving from running but since sporting activities are suspended, they have no other alternative to generate income,” Lebopo said.

Lebopo expressed gratitude to the Lesotho Sports and Recreation Commission (LSRC) for expressing interest in assisting athletes.

In April 2020, the LSRC promised to financially supplement semi-professional athletes in face of the pandemic. The LSRC was hoping that the athletes would be assisted through the government’s Covid-19 relief fund initiative. However, to date, nothing has happened.

Chairperson of the Athletes’ Commission, Moholo Lekomola said they found it fit to find ways of helping the athletes overcome their challenges.

“We didn’t have any formal communication from the athletes about what they are going through… we only learnt from different media platforms. Our duty is to fight for the wellbeing of athletes, so we called them to understand their challenges and find a way forward,” Lekomola said.

He said they have already started working on a document that they will use to request for assistance from different local and international organisations.

“We want athletes from other sporting codes to benefit from the initiative and we are looking forward to coming up with a clear criterion on how the athletes will be selected,” Lekomola said.

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