GULU ATHLETES TO REPRESENT UGANDA AT JAPAN MARATHON
By Christopher Nyeko
GULU: Two athletes from Gulu City in Northern Uganda are set to represent Uganda at the international marathon in Japan’s city of Izumisano.
The local athletes include Walter Oyoo and Agnes Oroma who will join the two other athletes selected by the Uganda athletics federation.
Oyoo told the media during a press conference at NUMEC that he had undergone specialized training from different parts of Uganda.
Oyoo, 23, and a second-year student of Business and Development Studies at Gulu university, will compete with several international stars in the marathon scheduled for February 12th, 2023.
Meanwhile Oroma 36, who has consistently participated in various sport activities in Uganda, described the event as a breakthrough in her life and that she is hopeful of a good performance during it.
According to the agreement between the authorities of Gulu City and Izumisano City, the air tickets among other expenses will fully be taken care of by Japan throughout the week-long event.
Their visas have been processed and they are expected to pick them on the 3rd February and will leave for Japan on the 8th February 2023.
They will compete in a full marathon of 42.195 kilometres.
Oyoo came to limelight after a triumphant performance in a 34-kilometer run in Gulu City as he finished 2:04:03 on 13th October 2022.
The run was organized by Betty Aol Ocan, the Gulu city Woman Member of Parliament.
The marathon which attracted more than 30 participants including national and international stars like Tonny Onono was the yardstick to identify the program’s beneficiary.
Oyoo, who boasts of many certificates and awards in the local and national competitions, says this will be his first international event after his earlier attempts were frustrated by the lack of finance and local support.
“I will lift the Ugandan flag high while in Japan and also use the opportunity to lobby the government of Japan to support local sports in Uganda”, said Oyoo.
Betty Aol Ocan, the Gulu City Woman Member of Parliament says that the partnership with Izumisano City is aimed at supporting and developing talents among local sportsmen.
This marathon is an annual event organised by the government of Japan and brings young athletes across the world to compete with the objectives of creating international relationships.
It is the first time Gulu city has been invited to participate.
The participants will not compete for any prizes but will be recognised as ambassadors of good deeds.
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