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International Gymnastics Federation President Visits Kenya

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The National Olympics Committee Executive board led by the President Dr. Paul Tergat has today hosted the International Gymnastics Federation President Mr. Morinari Watanabe, from Japan at the NOC-K offices.

Mr. Monari landed in Kenya on 17th April 2022 endeavoring to achieve a meeting with NOC-K to discuss the development of Gymnastics in Kenya.

 During the meeting Mr. Monari explained the importance of promoting one of the top global Olympic sports in the country.

“Back home in Japan, 65% of the population is made up of either the old, or children. Unlike African countries and especially Kenya where the youth make up 75% of the population. At that age in Japan, most people are not interested in technology, thus gymnastics is such a popular sport. Imagine how much more it can do here in Kenya with full support?” He spoke.

Watanabe, who is an International Olympic Committee board member, served as an executive board member of Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and a member of the Council of the Association of the Summer Olympic International Federations. (ASOIF), has been a great champion of achieving mutual prosperity urging wealthier National Federations to support those with fewer economic resources.

During the meeting several deliberations were set to be achieved with the NOC-K Executive board concurring that the National Federation will be supported in setting structures for grassroots mobilization of gymnasts.

NOC-K President Dr. Paul Tergat who sits in the IOC with Mr. Watanabe thanked him for his visit and considering Kenya as a pilot for gymnastics development in Africa.

“Team Kenya is famously known for its performance and love for sports, having gymnastics introduced to the youths, will go a long way in ensuring our dominance in exemplary performance stays at the top. We are always excited to welcome new members to Team Kenya and the team will work towards ensuring the ball starts rolling.”

The Secretary General Francis Mutuku emphasized on the technical support that will be needed towards the federation owing to its uniqueness.

“Our focus is the Dakar 2026 Youth Olympic Games and the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games. From the proposal by the IF President, we can confidently say that we will be able to have Team Kenya participating in these games. Our three pillars of transformation, impact and legacy can truly be achieved through such partnerships and support” He concluded.

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