By Norman Katende
THE organisers of the MTN Kampala marathon have introduced appearance fees for top foreign athletes as a way of increasing the competition in the annual event that is scheduled for November 24.
The registration fee for the marathon is sh20,000 per person and sh1m for each corporate team.
The national athletics federation president Dominic Otuchet made the revelation during the launch of the annual event that took place at Serena Hotel on Friday morning.
L-R: MTN CEO Mazen Mroue, Huawei Uganda CEO Rodaslaw Kedzia, Stanbic Bank head of investment banking Patrick Mwehirwe, UAF president Domenic Otuchet, WATER Aid country manager Peter Okubar, Vision Group CEO Robert Kabushenga and Kampala Metropolitan spokesperson Ibin Ssenkumbi. Photo by Norman Katende
Otuchet said that they will follow it up to see that the different federations submit the best athletes that will raise the level of competition.
“We shall make sure that they follow the standards. We are looking at about 8 international athletes who we will cater for all their costs,” said Otuchet.
MTN is looking at an estimated 20,000 athletes to take part in the 42km race with subsidiary 10km and 21km events with a new route being designed for the half marathon runners.
Tiva Water's Daniel Ololia displays unclean water in a demonstration about water purification technology that will be distributed in Karamoja from the proceeds of the marathon. Photo by Norman Katende
Robert Kabushenga tastes the purified water after the demonstration. Photo by Norman Katende
“We’ve had a problem in the past of having so many runners in the route hence the lead car would not get through them and this would leave some marathoners getting lost in the 10km crowd. So what we are doing is to change the course so that we can have a good course free from so many people in order to get good times,” said the athletics federation technical official Paul Okello.
MTN Uganda chief executive officer Mazen Mroue was excited about the marathon, whose proceeds will go towards getting safe water to 10000 families in the Karamoja region.
Invited guests enjoy breakfast during the launch. Photo by Norman Katende
“It is good for the public to contribute something to make life worthwhile. Let us run to save a life,” said Mroue at the launch.
New Vision chief executive officer Robert Kabushenga, who was moved by the way communities are benefiting from the marathon proceedings in both Amuria and Kiryandongo appealed to the corporates and public to contribute towards the cause.
Huawei, Vision Group, Rwenzori Beverages and Stanbic Bank have joined MTN in sponsoring the event with WATER Aid being the facilitating partners for the marathon.