Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) emerged the overall winners of the 10th edition of the 2016 East Africa Military Games and Cultural event.
The event came to a climax yesterday at Amahoro Stadium with Kenya winning gold in three of five sports disciplines.
KDF best performances were in handball, football and cross-country. The winners were presented with trophies during the closing ceremony attended by Chiefs of Defence Staff from the four participating countries.
In athletics, Kenya dominated both the women and men’s cross country races at IPRC-Kigali, with Uganda taking silver. Rwanda came in third place and Tanzania finished fourth in general classification.
Kenya’s Emmanuel Kipsang won gold after clocking a time of 27:15: 68 while Private Franklin Ocelli and Stephen Arita finished second and third with a time of 27:16:10 and 27:17:15, respectively.
In the women’s category, it was an all-Kenyan affair as Sheila Chepkirui clocked 31:17:18 minutes to win, with Joyceline Chepkosgei and Judith Chemutai finishing on the podium.
KDF handball team reclaimed the trophy after overcoming holders RDF 32-26 in the last game and having rumpled the other teams. Uganda and Rwanda walked away with silver and bronze medals, respectively.
In football, KDF snatched the title since hosts Rwanda Defence Forces failed to score more than a goal against Tanzania to claim the top prize. RDF settled for silver.
Tanzania took home bronze in football, but were winners in netball having dominated the discipline after overcoming defending champions Uganda.
Uganda beat Kenya 55-43 to win silver medal.
Rwanda’s best performance was in baseketball where the men’s team retained the title having conquered all their opponents, with Kenya and Uganda collecting silver and bronze, respectively.
While closing the EAC Military Games, Defence minister James Kabarebe thanked the participants and organisers for making the event a success.
He described it as an achievement and indication of the good progress in pushing ahead with the integration agenda.
“The participants have showed good sportsmanship during the games and the cultural activities which aimed at contributing toward strengthening the friendship and unity of purpose among the member countries,” Kabarebe said.
EAC deputy secretary-general for political federation, Charles Njoroge, said the event was organised within the framework of EAC cooperation, which includes cultural exchanges and sports activities to enhance the spirit of comradeship among armed forces of member states.
The chairperson of the organising committee, Brig Gen Ferdinand Safari, said the two weeks of the games were enjoyable.
The event is an annual regional tournament held on rotational basis. Tanzania will host the 11th edition of the games next year.