Ruto, Raila cheer on champions at Nyayo
Deputy President William Ruto and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Saturday put a united front to cheer locals stars during the World Athletics Continental Tour dubbed Kip Keino Classic held at the Nyayo National Stadium.
The two leaders gave standing ovations to world champions Beatrice Chepkoech (3,000m steeplechase), Hellen Obiri (5,000m) and Timothy Cheruiyot (1,500m) after their stellar performances in the first major athletics event to be held in Kenya since the 2017 world Under-18 Championships.
The leaders reiterated the importance of sports, saying the unifying factor can never be overlooked.
The two political rivals were seen on the podium closely talking with each other. Ruto said the role played by the athletes should not be taken for granted.
“We recognise that sports is an enabler of sustainable development and key vehicle in attaining team spirit, cohesion and inclusion in our society.
We will keep scouting for and nurturing talents besides amplifying Kenya’s staging and participation in sporting events at all levels to enrich our social, economic and cultural fabric,” said Ruto.
Raila commended the role of trailblazers in the world of sports more so in athletics who have given the country respectable status.
“Major sporting events remain a source of wholesome entertainment and bring Kenyans together.
Kenyan athletes are exemplary brand ambassadors for which we, as a people, are grateful. I am delighted to join the fans today to cheer our stars,” he said.