Sh7m boost as 2012 Soyas are launched


NAIROBI, Kenya, August 29- The ninth Sports Personality of the Year Awards (Soya) were launched in Nairobi on Wednesday under the theme ‘Blazing a Nation.’

Event founder and retired former world marathon record holder, Paul Tergat was on hand to receive Sh7m from title sponsors for this year’s gala whose date and venue are yet to be announced.

“We had high expectations at the Olympics but despite the poor show, it’s a chance to diversify into new grounds as shown by the results of Javelin thrower, Julius Yego.

“We won’t hesitate to make deliberate recognition and reward accordingly during our gala to upcoming and new disciplines which demonstrate desire to break new grounds,” Tergat added.

Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said they will keep supporting athletes in the country adding that with more encouragement from the corporate bodies, local teams are likely to post more positive results in the future.

“I’m a firm believer that where we have failed this year is not giving them much needed support and believe that even our Paralympics team is bound to bring glory once the games begin on Wednesday.

The list of nominees for the various categories is likely to be released after the completion of the London Paralympics games and the East Africa School games currently underway in Burundi.

Last year, double world champion Vivian Cheruiyot won another double bagging the inaugural Overall Sports Personality of the Year in addition to the Sportswoman of the Year accolades.

World Marathon record holder Patrick Makau won the Sportsman of the Year category in the gala attended by Ethiopian track star Meselech Melkamu as main guest.