By Daniel Edyegu
KAPCHORWA town and its periphery, the home to Uganda’s golden boy Stephen Kiprotich, turned into vast jubilation fete as residents celebrated the victory of the athlete in the Moscow Marathon for the second day on end.
In Kapchorwa town, boda boda cyclists, taxis, special hires cars and private motorists joined the streets hooting and ululating in excitement. From 8am until noon, residents poured on the streets to celebrate Kiprotich’s victory.
“I’m happy. He has done it again for us. There are a lot of ‘Kiprotichs’ in this district and Sebei region as a whole but we lack a training facility. I used to compete in the 10000 metres but pulled out due to lack of a training facility and government support. The construction of the high altitude ground in the district is delaying. Kiprotich’s second golden win in the world platform must nudge Government to do for us athletes something,” said Erukana Satya, 29, a former athlete.
To spice up the celebration mood in the town, businessmen organised free entertainment shows and discos for the residents in the town.
Denis Batya, the proprietor of Tolosho Investment Agency, an electrical shop in Kapchorwa town threw a street party for the residents to celebrate the victory.
“It’s a trans-night disco party absolutely free of charge. We are going to party until morning to showcase out pride and happiness for what Kiprotich has done,” Batya stressed.
Lawrence Cherop, the LC 3 councillor for Kapchorwa town council and proprietor of Goodwill Restaurant gave out five crates of soda to customers at the eating joint.
Paul Mumya, the proprietor Kapchorwa Paradise hotel, located at the heart of the town, organised a free drama and music show on top of offering all district athletes meals at his hotel free of charge for two days.
“As a district that relies on agriculture as the main economic activity, we are happy to yield athletes who are putting Uganda on the world map. Our gesture as a hotel is a strategy to encourage more athletes in Sebei region to strive and make it on the world platform,” Mumya said.
A group of sports enthusiasts from the region also organised to travel to Entebbe and welcome Kiprotich.
Unlike the previous time when Government organised buses to fetch people from Kapchorwa to welcome Kiprotich when he won gold in last year’s Olympics, a similar gesture was unlikely, according to Jane Frances Kuka, the Kapchorwa resident district commissioner.
Buruhani Siwa, charged with organising transport for Sabiny interested in welcoming Kiprotich at Entebbe said they had already agreed on modalities of footing the transport cost.
“A total of 150 people were willing to travel to Kampala. We met and agreed that each of us contributes shs 55,000 to cater for the journey to and from Entebbe.” Siwa said.