By Joshua Kutuny via fb
On Saturday 12 October 2019, Kenyans were United in celebrating Eliud Kipchoge as he smashed his own record at the INEOS159 Challenge in Austria.
As we continue to bask in the glory and celebrate Mr Kipchoge’s feat, We are equally soul searching about this extraordinary achievement by Eliud Kipchonge.
As we congratulate Mr Kipchoge and all other sporting personalities who have brought Honour to this country, it should not be lost to Kenyans that the athletes efforts have in the past gone unnoticed.
The State has continued to fail to recognise their efforts by neglecting or refusing to develop sporting facilities to nature the great talent in our youths.
Back 2013, Jubilee Party announced that it would build five stadia but 7yrs later, nothing has been done to build even one.
The Kamariny Stadium in Elgeyo Marakwet County that Deputy President William Ruto promised Kenyans has not taken off despite reiterating the same in the 2017 General Election.
The works in Kipchoge Keino in Eldoret, The Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Kapsabet-Nandi County, Kisumu, Mombasa, among others are yet to take off.
Ironically, Dr Ruto, Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago and his Nandi counterpart Stephen Sang were in Austria yet stadium in their backyards are in diplorable condition.
They have nothing to show in Kipchoge and Kamariny where world record beeting Kipchoge trained.
When will they walk the talk and build the stadiums in their home towns or they simply went to celebrate Kipchoge in Austria as part of the usual political showoff?
The DP in 2017 said the Government would build a total of nine stadia instead of the original five that Jubilee had announced in 2013.
The state of Sporting facilities in the country remains unchanged despite the seeking to assure supporters in 2017 that the pledged stadia will be ready
This clearly shows that the Government has failed to prioritised the welfare of its sportsmen and women.
The National and County governments have failed to establish sports academies to develop talents of young people.
It was interesting to see prominent government officials including the Deputy President travel all the way to Austria to cheer Mr Kipchoge as he made history by running a 42Km marathon in just under 2 hours.
Mr Kipchoge suddenly became a special Kenyan who attracted Government officials to the extent that they had to travel to Austria.
But locally, it appears that nobody in Government recognised his sporting prowess.
He had not attracted the kind of attention here in Kenya before the INEOS race yet he has been winning races and flying the country’s flag high in the past.
I have not seen any Government official both at the National and County Governments pay him a courtesy call at his training camp or even invite the marathoner to their offices.
It is also Ironically that Dr Ruto has never lobbied for any sponsorship from several Government department to sponsor any local marathon that will promote upcoming athletics in the region rather dragging young talented youths to politics. Hopefully our Hero Eliud Kipchonge wont be drag into politics.
No Governor or even the DP had seen the need to extend an invitation to this great Kenyan.
It would be interesting to watch the kind of reception that Mr Kipchoge will receive from Government mandarins when he returns back home.