The Managing Director of Nestle Ghana Limited, Moataz El Hout, has promised his company’s continual support for sports and to ensure that more talents were unearthed to compete for the nation in international competitions.
He said there was the need to produce talented athletics who could become professionals and win laurels for the nation.
Mr El Hout said sports played a pivotal role in ensuring good life which his company stood for saying “we do not only produce good food, but in addition we organise and support important sporting events to underscore our ambition as the world’s leader in nutrition, health and wellness”.
He was speaking at the launch of this year’s 27th Accra Milo Marathon at the company’s premises in Accra last Friday.
He disclosed that this year’s event will see the distribution of over 2000 training boots to some deprived schools across the ten regions, to enable participants give off their best.
This year’s marathon is under the theme: ‘Meet the Champions”. Nestle is expected to spend GHS1.5m for the event, of which Voltic Mineral Water and Metz Insurance Company are co- sponsors.
On his part, the Category Business Manager for Nestle Ghana Limited, Olufemi Akintola, said it is expected that at least 8000 runners would participate in the September 21 marathon which covers a distanced of 42.2 km for the mass sport while the U-15 or the junior sport covers a distanced of 5km.
In a move to whip up enthusiasm, the company revealed that the prize monies have significantly been increased.
For the junior sport category, the 1st prize is now GHS2,000 up from GHS 1,200 last year. 2nd prize is now GHS1,500 up from GHS 800 last year whiles the second runner-up romps home with GHS1,000 up from GHS 500 last year.
The winner for the mass sport is expected to go home with GHS12,000 up from GHS 10,000 last year. 2nd prize is now 8,000 up from GHS7,000 last year. The third prize is now GHS6,000 up from GHS5,000 last year.
Chairman for the Dansoman Keep fit Club, Mr Danny Welbeck, disclosed that new security measures have been introduced to prevent athletics from cheating.
He said certified athletics shall obtain a security band from the distribution center as well as a running vest.
He added: “On the route athletics would be made to collect a security item from undisclosed security check points. Do not receive assistance in any form from friends or from the members of the public. Athletics must not exchange their vest or bands with any other person and must successfully go through all the chartered routes”.
Mr Welbeck stressed that any act that could infringe the aforementioned directives could lead to the disqualification of an athletic.
It was against this backdrop that he revealed that medical screening for prospective participants would take place from 14th to 20th September, 2013 at the Azuma Nelson Sports Complex.
The mass sport, Mr Welbeck disclosed, starts from The Point, Nungua in Accra, through some principal streets in the capital and ends at the Dansoman Keep fit Grounds whiles the junior sport starts from the New Times Cooperation and ends at the Dansoman Keep fit Club, where eventual winners will receive their mouthwatering prizes.
Interested persons were asked to visit the Dansoman keep fit Club, Abrantei Sport, Abeka Lapaz and the various stadiums across the country for registration forms. Media awards have also been earmarked after the event to award media practitioners and media outlets.