Police today said they were still searching for an athlete from Sierra Leone who went missing after the London Marathon, despite announcing yesterday that she had been found.
Mami Konneh Lahun, 24, who did not return to her accommodation in Greenwich after crossing the finish line in 20th place on Sunday, failed to check in at a London airport yesterday for her flight home.
Scotland Yard apologised today after mistakenly saying yesterday that she had been found safe and well. Police said there had been an error in communication.
The athlete, who is Sierra Leone’s fastest-ever 5,000 metre and 10,000 metre runner, won her own country’s marathon last year.
She is the first woman from Sierra Leone to have represented the country at the London Marathon and finished in a time of two hours and 46 minutes.
Police say they are concerned for her safety because she has no links to the UK, had no mobile phone and did not have any apparent means of support in London.
One possibility is that she may have fled to avoid returning to her native country. It is not uncommon for athletes from developing nations to run away during international campaigns or claim asylum.
More than 70 athletes and coaching staff disappeared or claimed asylum after the 2012 Olympics.
Miss Lahun had arrived in Britain a week ago to prepare and had been staying in temporary accommodation in Greenwich.
Officers from the Greenwich missing persons unit asked anyone with information to call the police 101 number.
( Courtesy London Evenning Stardard & Africa Review …… Source …… Our Freelance Sport Contributor in London )