An endless stream of runners clad in yellow vests was a sight to behold moments after the runners were flagged off for the Arua Run at the Arua Golf course grounds this morning.
By 6:30 am, anxious runners could be seen trotting from their homes to the Golf course grounds for the warm up session before hitting the 10km track.
Last year, the Telecom giant introducedthe regional runs to give the athletics event a national feel.With all the 28,000kits sold out, huge numbers of people poured in to the Golf Course grounds for a warm up session. After a 30 minute warm up, the runners were flagged off at exactly 7:28 am.
Alex Cherop, a Police officer based in Arua completed the race in 29 minutes and 5 seconds, making him the overall winner. He walked away with a cash prize of 700,000 shs. In second and third place were David Solimo and Uma Joseph respectively. They also walked away with cash prizes. In the ladies’ category, AdhaMunguleya came first. She completed the race in 35 minutes and 21 seconds, winning herself 700,000shs. In Second and third place were Sharon Chepkwemoi and AnnetChebet respectively. The first eight men and women won various cash prizes.
Despite her old age 71 year old Grace Achia who walks with the aid of a walking stick completed the 10k race. Her courage to participate was bucked by her desire to contribute to the improvement of maternal health which she refers to as a very good cause.
Other runners simply participated to have fun. They could be seen stopping for photo opportunities as they covered the 10kilometres at their own pace.
At the end of the run, an awarding ceremony was held at the Golf Course grounds. The runners had an opportunity to cool off as they enjoyed entertainment from a various artistes.
Action moves to Masaka next week where the people from Masaka and surrounding areaswill run to make a difference in maternal health in the region.
Last year’s regional runs were successfully conducted in Mbale, Gulu and Mbarara. This year, in the spirit of giving an opportunity to all, the runs have been taken to different districts; Soroti, Arua and Masaka towns. The regional races are now an annual feature of the MTN Marathon season. Last week, a similar run was held in Soroti town. Today, the race has been successfully concluded in Arua ahead of Next week’s run in Masaka town. Thereafter, action will be in Kampala on the 24th of this month. All the races are held under the theme; “A good reason to run” as all the proceeds will go to improving maternal health in the country.
The Telecom introduced the regional races as a way of allowing people in the regions to showcase their abilities and also to give people in the participating regions, an opportunity to contribute to the well-being of others through the causes that the MTN Run and Marathon support.
With an estimated 336 deaths per 100,000 live births, Uganda’s maternal mortality is one of the highest in the world. This explains why for the third year in a row, the Marathon will focus on improving maternal health.
Despite her advanced
Proceeds from last year’s Marathon are being used to complement efforts by the Ministry of Health to improve service delivery in 5 Health Centre IV facilities across Uganda.