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Loroupe hails athletes

NAIROBI, Kenya, August 31- Legendary Kenya athlete Tegla Loroupe believes recognition from the government is one of the reasons why Kenyan athletes have done well this season.The peace ambassador said on Tuesday that monetary rewards and national honours go along way to embolden Kenya’s sportsmen and women who achieve amazing feats on global sports arenas.

“I think why our athletes have done so well is because our government has come in to help our people,” said the two time World Championships bronze medalist.

“When you see the President rewarding the athletes they get morale, and then others realize that they can make it,” added Loroupe.

Loroupe said that the profile of sports needs to be enhanced so that Kenyans can appreciate the value of their heroes.

“The media houses in particular have to help build sports in this country. We need to be given first priority not other sports from other countries. They should not just focus on the negative side of things but also highlight the positive,” said Loroupe.

Loroupe is in the throes of organizing her annual peace and cultural show which will be known as the ‘The Great Turkwel Race & Cultural Beauty Show which will be held on September 25.

“This is not the normal race as we normally do have in Kapenguria. It is to raise funds for the school that Kengen are building in Turkwel that will help the community in that area,” said Loroupe.

The race has been transformed from a social to a fundraising event, open to both individuals and the corporate world, to experience the North Rift by participating in the fun and contributing to the improvement of the area’s living conditions.

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Since the event’s inception in 2006, Loroupe is satisfied with how it has forged harmony amongst the different communities in North Western Kenya.

“There is now trust and togetherness that was not there before. As you know, the conflict has been over resources between the Karamajong from Uganda, the Turkana from both sides of the Kenya-Uganda border and the Pokot. The level of the education amongst the youth there is very low and they fight not because they want to but in order to survive,” said Loroupe.

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