MTN is one of the major contributors to the sports sector in Uganda always offering timely financial support to sports events, Federations or individuals.
For the 14th year running, the giant telecommunication company have committed support to the Uganda Athletics Federation and the partnership gets stronger every over the years.
On Tuesday, MTN flagged off a contingent of athletes (track and field) and thereafter treated the team to a breakfast at the MTN headquarters in Kampala before setting off for Gold Coast, Australia the Commonwealth Games.
According to Val Oketcho, the Corporate Communications Manager at MTN Uganda, the partnership with UAF has been ongoing for the last 14 years, with the highlight being the annual MTN Kampala Marathon.
“We wish you well in Australia and we hope for medals. We are backing you 100%. You are on the world stage and this is an opportunity for you to shine. We do hope that these games translate into your personal success, “Oketcho told the athletes.
The athletes on the other hand promised to go out there and fight for the pride of the nation with Winnie Nanyondo who won a bronze medal in the 800m race at the last Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 indicating she is ready.
“We are ready as a team, the morale is high and we are wall focused towards making sure we achieve our targets. Personally I have been at this stage before, faced the same opponents so I’m confident we shall make Uganda proud.” She stated.
Uganda will have a team of about 15 athletes, participating in sprints, the steeplechase, and long distance races.
The Ugandan athletes consist of among others Winnie Nanyondo, Halima Nakayi, Juliet Chekwel, Thomas Ayeko, Stella Chesang, Emily Nanziri, Albert Chemutai, Philip Kipyeko, Mercyline Chelangat and Joshua Cheptegei.
I have confidence that the athletes will do well, considering the training they have been undergoing for the last one and half months. While in the camp, we have been working as a team and we believe there is still an opportunity for growth and success, explains Anne Edatu, the executive representative for the North East at the Uganda Athletics Federation (UAF).
Her explanation was further backed by team coach Narris Bugingo, who noted that the team was fit and that they were ready to show the world what they were about.
“The team has been in camp for a long time in Kapchorwa and I believe we have fine-tuned them to the best ability and we have confidence in them,” Bugingo asserted.
The athletics calendar is now largely sponsored by MTN Uganda, which has helped UAF identify talent and organize events around the country. In 2018, UAF will be able to organize the Eastern, Northern and Western road races.