Stay away from drugs, first lady urges youth
01 March 2015, 06:29
Nairobi - First Lady Margaret Kenyatta on Friday told the leadership of Elgeyo Marakwet County to ensure all athletes remain in school to complete their education despite the temptation and thrills of earning millions of shillings from international competitions.
She said the athletes should also get lessons in financial literacy in order to make sound investments when they finally win international races that come with thousands of dollars in prize money.
“I know that the thrill of earning thousands of dollars through winning of races is good but I urge the Governor to ensure that all our athletes stay in school”, said the First Lady.
She spoke at Iten Sports Ground in Elgeyo Marakwet where she delivered the 21st fully kitted Beyond Zero mobile clinic to the county. The clinic was sponsored by Tullow Oil.
Elgeyo Marakwet County is home to some of the greatest athletic stars in the country including the current world’s fastest woman in the half marathon, Florence Kiplagat , Ednah Kiplagat, Vivian Cheruiyot, the World Junior Champion Viola Kibiwott , Mary Kaitany, Dennis Kimeto, Ezekiel Kemboi , Daniel Komen and Wilson Kipsang.
The County is popularly referred to as the County of champions
The First Lady described education as the most important inheritance any parent can bequeath the children.
“Both the boy child and the girl child need to be given equal opportunities to enable them grow into productive and responsible
members of our society”, said the First Lady
The First Lady however recognized the major contributions that athletics has done for the county including such investments as the Potters School and the Lornah Kiplagat Sports Academy and Stadium.
“Young girls and boys should be encouraged to emulate our national athletic heroes and heroines. Through education and training, they can become as good as the current athletic stars if not much better”, she added
And for the girl child to realize her full potential, said the First Lady, she must be released from cultural chains of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and forced early marriages.
“We must break the chains that ensnare the girl child, such as the FGM and early marriages, and set them free, through education, to give them a chance to pursue their dreams”, added the mother of the nation.
She said both girls and boys should be given equal opportunities through good examples and mentoring to enable them become world changers.
“Let us give our children the opportunity to become all they can be and continue to put Kenya on the world map”, she added
She thanked the residents of Elgeyo Marakwet for welcoming and hosting her during the training sessions in the high altitude regions this past week.
The governor Mr Alex Tolgos feted the First Lady as a national champion before handing her a symbolic key to the county and further invited her to establish a home in Elgeyo Marakwet .
The First Lady remarked that she will consider setting up a retirement home as requested.
County Assembly Speaker Albert Kochei requested the First Lady to consider holding the 2016 First Lady’s Half Marathon in the County.