The reigning Commonwealth Games 100m champion Ferdinand Omanyala is among seven athletes who have benefited from the Association of National Olympics Committees of Africa (ANOCA) scholarships ahead of the 2014 Paris Olympic Games in France.
The beneficiaries include the Commonwealth Games 5,000m champion Beatrice Chebet, Commonwealth Games 5,000m silver medalist Nicholas Kipkorir Kimeli, Commonwealth games 5,000m bronze medalist Jacob Krop and Africa Games 5,00om champion Margaret Kipkemboi Chelimo.
While presenting the cheque to the athletes, NOC-K secretary General Francis Mutuku said that athletes will be getting kshs 100,000 per month and will run until July 2024.
“The first disbursement has already been done for the next three months and they will be getting such money from today all the way to July 2024, a month to the Olympic Games as long as they are on the path to the Olympics, their money will be there,” said Mutuku.
“We have also brought in financial experts on how to spend their money because they must give us a report every month on the expenditure. Preparation is very important. I know some of us expect medals and good performance but journey starts when they prepare well,” added Mutuku.
Omanyala said that preparing for an event is very expensive for any athlete, breaking it down as a sprinter, he said that in a week he has to go for three sessions of physiotherapy which is about 2,500 per session, making it 7,500, gym work three times a week and every session costs 500 so that is about 1,500 for a cheap gym.
He added that he is fortunate enough to get such sponsorship but there are so many athletes out there who don’t have such opportunity and cannot afford to pay for the stadium.
“I am urging to the government if they can reduce the prizes or rather put it free for sportsmen and women to use the stadium for free. Let people come and train for free next to the big stars,” he said.