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Ethiopians, Kenyans display superiority in Okpekpe race second time

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AUCHI – Ethiopian and Kenyan runners dominated the Okpekpe 10km race on Saturday, sweeping the honours for the second time in the male and female categories.

Ethiopia’s Eshom Mnen, Amos Ikiplimo and Gornelius Kangogo emerged first, second and third respectively in the male category.

They won with times of 28mins 36seconds, 28mins 53secs and 29mins 01secs respectively.

Kenya’s Wundi Ayella, Genet Yallew and Berhame Dirbaba also emerged first, second and third respectively in the female category.

They won with times of 32 mins 41 secs, 32 mins 52 secs and 32 mins 59 secs respectively.

The race also saw Gov. Adams Oshiomhole of Edo emerging the winner in the VIP category with a record time of one hour 20 minutes.

In his remarks after the race, Oshiomhole said the message behind the event mattered more than the prize money.

He said the event had shown that Africa was united, as against the negative perception by the world about Nigeria as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency.

Oshiomhole expressed delight that the state hosted the world, noting that the Okpekpe community had been placed on the world map through the event.

The governor, however, criticised the disparity in the prizes, saying “women must have equal compensation as men for equal work done. I believe in gender equality’’.

He said further that the Edo Government was working on holding a full marathon race in Urhonigbe in the Orhiomwon Local Government Area of the state.

“I encourage the organisers of this event to work on that between now and December, and the Edo Government will support them,’’ Oshiomhole said.(NAN)

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