-In Kenema Mayor Thomas Karimu Baio’s Marathon
Team Liberia has won three gold medals, a silver and bronze in a two-day special track and field meet, held in the City of Kenema, among athletes from the host country, Guinea, Liberia.
The Kenema Mayoral Marathon was in honor of Mayor Thomas Karimu Baio which marked the fourth edition of the Kenema Mayor’s Marathon from Monday, December 31, 2018 to Tuesday, January 1, 2019.
Liberia’s female high jumper Nancy Saah; javelin thrower Charles Gbelia; and Heavy weight lifter Thomas Garwo, Jr., grabbed a gold medal each.
5,000 meter runner Andrew Kpehe emerged 2nd (silver medalist) in his event, while Cornelius Pennoh and Lydia Gbar snatched bronze medals in the High Jump and 3,000 meters events respectively.
The Minister of Sport, Ibrahim Nyelenkeh and the Mayor of Kenema started this year’s Mayoral Marathon at Mano-Junction in Kenema. The Mayoral Marathon is an annual event (since 2015) organized by the Athletics Association in Kenema to celebrate the New Year with sitting Mayors.
“We hope to get sponsorship from the business community, because the Liberia Athletics Federation (LAF) is the only sporting association which continues to bring gold, silver and bronze medals in the country,” Mr. Mulbah Zaza, president of LAF disclosed.
He said for the four years, the LAF has not received a cent from the government and the US$2,000 allotted to the LAF for operations in the 2018/2019 budget by the government for the whole year is “very insufficient.”
Meanwhile, it can be recalled, Team Liberia has clenched two medals in the U-20 Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Athletics Championship, from Wednesday – Sunday, June 20 – 24, 2018 at the Gold Coast Stadium in Accra, Ghana, amongst at least 350 athletes from 14 countries.
At the Accra meet, Liberia’s male shot-put athlete got Silver Medal, while female shot-put athlete, Lawrina Cooper, won a Bronze Medal.
For his part, the Vice President for Technical Affairs, Frederick Krah, said the athletes need training; scholarships to continue their education; and ways of getting to any tournament to participate.
The LAF is considered the mother sports of all of the sporting disciplines in Liberia, including the Liberian oldest sports, dating back in the early 1900s.