The Beyond Zero Half Marathon took place at Nyayo National stadium, Nairobi On Sunday where thousands of athletes and dignitaries took part.
The initiative of First Lady Margaret Kenyatta, which attracted more than 50,000 participants, was divided into several categories including 21 km half marathon, 10 km marathon and corporate race, five-kilometre race and two-kilometre for pregnant women as well as Paralympic race for T11, T12 and T13.
The event aimed at curbing maternal deaths and child mortality, saw Josephat Bett and Brilliant Kipkoech win the top price of Sh250,000 each in the men and women 21 kilometer races respectively.
In the 10 kilometers race, Vincent Ngetich and Monica Ngige emerged winners bagging Sh75,000 each.
Besides the winners, who expressed their joy, thousands of participants were delighted in the charity event that they hope will ultimately save lives.
First lady Margaret Kenyatta, was overly excited to complete 10 km race. She was received by President Uhuru Kenyatta as the excited crowd cheered on.
Deputy President William Ruto was also not left behind as he displayed his athletic skills, making it to the 21 kilometer’s finish line.
He, however, had a word to President Uhuru Kenyatta who didn’t participate in any track event.
“I represented the Presidency in the 21km and we did well. First Lady in the 10km. We didn’t have a representative in the 5km and 2km.
In response, President Kenyatta promised to participate in the track events next year.
“I will compete next year. I would have preferred to do the 2km, but maybe five or even 10. Let us see if my brother William will defeat me,” President Kenyatta said.
DP Ruto was keen to note that the event the President had opted for was for expectant mothers.
“…I want to thank you (the president) for agreeing that next year you will consider representing the presidency in the remaining two races. The one you say you will compete in is for expectant mothers,” Ruto said lightly.
In the spirit of supporting Kenyan sport, on his part, President Kenyatta assured Kenyans that his government will prioritize sports in its agenda this year.
“We will fund all the national teams this year courtesy of the (sports) fund which we recently put into place. We will also fund the preparations for our athletes,” he said.
Other prominent personalities who attended the event include Sports CS Amina Mohamed, former Prime Minister of Ethiopia Hailemariam Besalegn, Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana and Central Bank Governor Patrick Njoroge.