Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State and the Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, said they would partner Evander Holyfield Foundation in the discovery of boxing talents in the state.
They said this on Friday at the “Rumbles in Lagos’’ novelty bout between former Heavyweight Boxer Holyfield and former Gov. Bola Tinubu at Landmark Event Centre in Lagos.
Ambode said that the state was indebted to creating platforms to ensure the success of young talents, being a land of great opportunities.
“This whole idea is geared toward getting in touch with our youths to create some kind of youth empowerment, especially, amongst young boxers in Nigeria.
“We are committed to seeing new champions come out of Lagos being a land of opportunities; that is why we are partnering with the heavyweight so we can together achieve great results.’’
According to him, the state will go all out to ensure discovered and undiscovered talents are celebrated and given due recognition at all times.
“We respect talented people of any age and we will give relentless support to sustain their abilities from local platforms to the world stage.
“For instance, when you listen to Femi Kuti, you will be able to notice that he is a champion in his own right, a world record holder and a product of our great state,” he said.
Ambode applauded Holyfield for his efforts in giving back to humanity and contributing to the future success story of the state.
Also, the Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, said that he was delighted that the heavyweight picked Lagos as one of his contact points to reaching young talents.
According to him, such initiatives will go a long way into inspiring as well as sustaining the dreams of youths to achieving greatness.
The 54-year-old heavyweight champion, Evander Holyfield, said that he was humbled by the reception he received from the leadership and people of Lagos State.
“I am indeed honoured to be in Lagos and in Nigeria, being one of the biggest nations in Africa.
“Being a heavyweight champion four times makes me humbled to look inward and create opportunities for others to thrive in the same field as I have over the years.
“Nigeria has got talented boxers that can become world figures and I am hoping with our help; these talents will gain recognition,” he said.
Holyfield appreciated his mother for the continuous sacrifice she made that gave him platforms to showcase his strength to the rest of the world.
He also urged mothers to be sacrificial enough to help their wards gain grounds in their fields of interest.
Femi Kuti also thrilled the personalities at the occasion with his performance.