NAIROBI, Kenya, January 6 – African stars Samuel Eto’o, Didier Drogba and John Mensah will soon be wearing the same football strip after Puma launched a revolutionary kit.The kit that was unveiled in Nairobi on Wednesday is part of a strategic partnership between the German sportswear giant and the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) under the ‘Play for Life’ banner aimed at promoting biodiversity in Africa.
“In 2010, Africa will be at the centre of the footballing world. The ‘Play for Life’ campaign and the release of the Africa Unity Kit is a powerful statement for PUMA,” said Puma Chairman and CEO Jochen Zeitz.
“PUMA is creating a unique kit embracing the diversity of African Nations teams while valuing the unity of players and supporters towards a common goal,” he added.
Eto’o who is in Kenya with the rest of the Cameroon squad that is preparing for the Africa Cup of Nations and is one of the official ambassadors for the campaign said that the initiative has given him and is team the impetus to highlight the importance of biodiversity in Africa.
“The new Africa Unity Kit has inspired me and my teammates. Not only are we very proud to wear a shirt that helps bring the continent of Africa together but to do so for such an important cause is truly an honour,” said the Inter Milan striker.
The striking kit has been designed to be worn by the 12 African football national teams that PUMA sponsors.
They include Cameroon, Ivory Coast and Algeria as well as hosts Angola, defending champions Egypt, Mozambique, Togo and Tunisia.
UNEP deputy executive director Angela Cropper said that the World Cup is the perfect opportunity to bring the importance of biodiversity to the fore.
“As the whole planet comes together for the World Cup, 2010 marks the year when people around the world will unite to conserve the planet’s almost priceless natural resource – its biodiversity. UNEP is delighted to partner with PUMA to bring this important message on conservation to millions of fans,” said Cropper.
Cameroon who are currently in Kenya to prepare for the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) in Angola will play Harambee Stars on Saturday at Nyayo National Stadium from 4 p.m.
The four time African champions will open their campaign against group D rivals Gabon on Wednesday next week followed by Zambia on January 17 and will finish off their crunch encounter against Tunisia on January 21.
Meanwhile Eto’o has agreed to be the patron of the Laikipia Unity Cup, a monthlong tournament that will bring together teams from around the Laikipia area and from urban underprivileged areas.