This is a press release from Athletics governing body of Kenya on 3rd January 2019, touching on the road races across the country:
As you are all aware Athletics Kenya is the only body in the country charged with the organization of all athletics activities locally and therefore, no any other body has the mandate to execute the same.
However, we have noted with concern the mushrooming of illegal road races across the country and the trend is really worrying. We are aware a few individuals have turned to road races around the country into a cash cow at the expense of the athletes.
From now hence forth, AK will take charge of all road races with the help of our affiliates to ensure organisers do not take advantage of the runners.
A few races organised especially in some parts of the country have been run with the sole purpose of exploiting runners. This is a very disturbing trend that needs to stop forthwith. As we all know, there are procedures under which races should be organised and these need be followed to the letter.
As AK, we will not hesitate to take action against those hell bent to create confusion within the athletics circles. We have organised structures to take care of all road races as long as the right procedure is followed. Cases of organisers squandering the winners money have been rampant and the complains from the runners are growing by the day.
We all know that for one to stage a race, you must be cleared at the county, regional and national level and this has not been happening. One must get a permit from AK before staging any race. Professionalism is key in hosting races and certain parameters must be adhered to when executing the same. For example, we must factor in things like the race fee; prize money, which of course has a ceiling set by AK; security, medical cover and general standardized officiating. Doping is also key and AK will work closely with Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya to ensure the exercise is well executed in every race.
As you are also aware, we have a calendar of events and for one to run any race it must feature on the same. We are keen to have an organised road racing series —well planned and spread throughout the year— and this can only happen with the support of all stakeholders. The long and short of it is that we are trying to streamline races especially the road races with a view to ensure our athletes are not exploited. Finally, we would like to wish you a Happy New Year 2019 and hope that we will work together to make the sport even more greater.
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