Asafa Powell warns athletes to closely watch over investment funds
Olympian Asafa Powell (right) and wife Alyshia during the Jamaica Observer’s Press Club at its Beechwood Avenue base on Thursday. (Photo: Karl Mclarty)

Olympian Asafa Powell has warned athletes to be smart with their investment money and to vigilantly watch over their accounts.

Powell's comments stem from an incident in which an alleged sum of US$12 million was reported missing from fellow Olympian and close friend Usain Bolt's investment account at Stocks and Securities Limited this week.

Powell, like Bolt, has retired from track and field and has also decided to invest his money for retirement.

Powell met with journalists during the Jamaica Observer's Press Club held at its Beechwood Avenue headquarters Thursday regarding the upcoming Sagicor SIGMA Corporate Run, for which he is an ambassador. He described Bolt's plight as "very unfortunate".

"I don't even know how to comment about the situation but just to say it's very unfortunate," he said. "Athletes should just be aware.

"Me and my wife were just having this conversation yesterday and she was like, 'Mek sure yuh check your account every day,'" he said jokingly.

"It's not a nine-to-five for us, we have a [short] lifespan in the sport. Whatever you make, you have to cherish that and try to multiply on that and just check every day. Be smart with your money."

SIGMA Run Race organiser Alfred Francis was also in attendance and he said the Bolt incident is a matter of people in society being unkind to their fellow man. But he says that one of the positives about the yearly 5K race is that it creates a spirit of unity among Jamaicans from various social classes.

"Love and kindness in the society, this is one of the things that SIGMA helps to inculcate, to spread the message of love and kindness and giving," he said. "I think that when the Observer celebrates an event like this, in the spirit of giving, it really catalyses a situation where others feel that spirit. We need a lot more of that spirit in our society because you find that people are doing so many unkind things."

But Francis says that he takes comfort in knowing that there are many athletes who are wise about preparing for retirement.

"An athlete and his preparation for life after track and field is very important," he said. "I must say that a lot of the athletes are very wise when it comes to their investments."

The Sagicor SIGMA Corporate Run takes place on Sunday, February 12. The race will take place through the streets of New Kingston and Half-Way-Tree. Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce is also an official ambassador for the event.

Jamaica's Asafa Powell competes in the men's 4x100m relay final during the athletics event at the Olympic Games inside the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on August 19, 2016. (Photo: AFP)
Sagicor SIGMA Corporate Run Race Organiser Alfred Francis (right) during the Jamaica Observer's Press Club event at its headquarters in Kingston yesterday. Also pictured is Sagicor Group Jamaica President and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Zacca. (Photo: Karl Mclarty)
BY RACHID PARCHMENT Digital sports coordinator parchmentr@jamaicaobserver.com

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