•National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) President Dr. Paul Tergat singled out the lure of performance-enhancing substances as the genesis of failure for the athletes.
•In attendance were Dorine Adhiambo, the CEO of the Kenya Academy of Sports, Jecinta Ochieng of Kenya Pipeline, Safaricom’s Martin Chere and Dr. Joan Mwaura the CEO of Lotto Foundation among others.
Local athletes have been cautioned against the dire consequences of using shortcuts as they pursue bigger dreams in their sporting careers.
National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) President Dr. Paul Tergat singled out the lure of performance-enhancing substances as the genesis of failure for the athletes.
Speaking during the Sports Personality of the Year Awards (SOYA) sponsorship launch in Nairobi, the legendary athlete remarked: “As we celebrate the 19th edition of the SOYA awards, we encourage our sports personalities to help us build a good reputation through a clean sport.”
Dr. Tergat pointed out that the 19th edition of SOYA awards which will return to Nairobi on January 20 will celebrate the continued success of Kenyan sports personalities who continue to put the country on the world map.
“Our focus this year and moving forward as encapsulated in our theme is to protect our integrity and be proud of what we do by playing clean. We need to wade off doping and build our sports careers through resilience, consistency and diligence. Our theme for the awards this year is Our Integrity, Our Pride, Our Sports and we must leave to expectations,” Tergat, who is also the SOYA founder, expounded.
“There is no shortcut to success and resilience is the way to go. Kenya has for the longest time faced accusations of widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs, hence the increasing number of its runners testing positive. Time has come for our athletes to achieve their goals the hard way. During our time, we did it the hard way, but at the end of it all, the success story was sweeter than anything else,” Tergat quipped.
Similar sentiments were echoed by SOYA’s trailblazing award winner Henry Wanyoikie and the chairman of the awards panel Chris Mbaisi. He said the schools' category will not feature in the 19th edition of the awards due to unavoidable circumstances.
Mbaisi remarked: “A good name is key to a good performance, and legacy building for the future generations in the sporting industry. The doping menace has impacted negatively on our image globally hence the need for a lasting solution. Our sports icons are our representatives as Kenya and what they do out there leaves an indelible mark. As a panel of judges, we continue to encourage our athletes to set a good example by playing smart and clean.
During the event, SOYA received over Sh5million in cash and in kind. The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) donated Sh1.5m, Lotto Foundation gave Sh 1.2m and National Social Security Fund (NSSF) Sh1 million. Safaricom PLC and Kenya Pipeline Company Limited donated Sh500,000 each.
In attendance were Dorine Adhiambo, the CEO of the Kenya Academy of Sports, Jecinta Ochieng of Kenya Pipeline, Safaricom’s Martin Chere and Dr. Joan Mwaura the CEO of Lotto Foundation among others.