RE: “Mrs Kagame, Kenyan First Lady headline Kigali peace marathon” (The New Times, May 22)
Congratulations to the First Ladies of Rwanda and Kenya for their participation in the marathon. This really encourages especially women to get active in sports on a regular basis in order to stay healthy.
Congratulations to the Kenyans for the wide winning sweeps in the 42km (full marathon), the 21 km (half marathon) in both men and women categories. Indeed it’s undisputable that our brothers and sisters in Kenya are Kings of the Road.
However, in the background of this, it is actually inspiring to find Rwandans who held their ground against the Kenyans ‘onslaught’ and I hope the Ministry of Sports/Rwanda Athletics Federation will step up their game and support them.
Here I am talking about Half Marathon (21km) second runner-up John Hakizimana and Number 5 Ferdinand Niyonsaba.
In the Women Half Marathon, three out of the five top winners were Rwandans including winner for the category Salome Nyirarukundo, second runner-up Claudette Musakakindi and Number 4 Martha Yankurije Martha.
The women category is quite inspiring indeed. As a point of curiosity anyone knows if Jean Marie Vianney Myasiro participated in this marathon? It appears that Rwanda’s sporting strengths solidly lie in cycling and marathon, but the latter need deliberate and targeted interventions from the Ministry/Athletic Federation to hunt and capture talents early on.
I believe the stamina required for cycling is more or less the same for running a marathon. Recently, our distinguished parliamentarians called for MINEDUC to ensure every school has an athletic track and football ground in order to start training youngsters.