By Joy Odor
As Confederation of African Athletics Region II sport event kicks off with a 21 kilometers marathon race, Ghanaian runners have emerged first in both male and female categories, beating their Nigerian and Nigerien counterparts.
Ghana’s Williams Amposah outran his male challengers from Nigeria and Niger to finish the 21 kilometer race at exactly one hour five minutes and nine seconds, while Nigeria’s Adamu Shehu and Nigerien Abdulkadir Sahley got to the finishing line right inside ABU Sports Complex at 1hour :05 minutes :42 seconds and 1hour :16 minutes :38 seconds amidst cheers from spectators who trooped into the sport complex to witness participants as they reached finishing line.
The female marathon category was won by Sakut Juliana from Ghana who finished the race at one hour 21 minutes and 40 seconds beating Nigerian and Nigerien runners, Vera Yohanna and Mary Offor who finished at one hour 22 minutes and 1hour, 22minutes respectively.
Earlier at Zazzau Emir palace which was the starting point of the race, Ambassador Nuhu Bamali expressed satisfaction on high level of preparedness and number of athletes from 14 African countries taking part in the competition, saying the sporting event would promote Unity amongst Africans and strengthen the spirits of love and togetherness which he noted were vital ingredients in achieving greatness.
In his speech, Vice President Confederation of African Athletics, Region II, Engr Ibrahim Shehu Gusau, while paying a glowing tribute to Emir of Zazzau Ambassador Nuhu Bamali for passion and love to develop his community, disclosed that over five thousand participants would feature in the three day field and track event, commending Vice Chancellor of ABU Zaria, Prof Kabiru Bala for his hospitality.
Other events to feature in this year’s edition of Africa Athletics Federation include, sprint, long jump, high jump, relay among others.