Dubbed the Bujumbura Peace Run, the event is one of several activities to promote the Burundi peace process and East African Community integration.
The run, whose launch coincided with the start of the AMF Burundi Chapter last Thursday, is the brain child of a youth group Afrika Mashariki Fest (AMF).
AMF is a regional youth platform that uses art and sports in its advocacy for the promotion of regional integration.
Uganda’s ambassador to Burundi Maj. Gen. Matayo Kyaligonza, who also as Dean of Diplomatic Corps was chief guest, thanked AMF for their efforts to mobilise youths.
“By using sports you are using the right medium to mobilise youth. Sport transcends boundaries with its power to unite and bring happiness.”
The launch took place at Bujumbura’s Bel Air Hotel also in the presence of the country’s representatives to the East African Assembly.
Burundi’s minister for East African Affairs Leontine Nzeyimana, Kenya’s duputy ambassador to Burundi Sylvane Chongwony, Bujumbura Mayor Freddy Mbonimpa and Burundi Athletics Federation president Dieudonne Kwizera all welcomed the initiative.
“We are here to preach peace, cohesion and patriotism to fellow youth as fundamentals of development of Burundi,” stated AMF CEO Ronnex Kisembo.
The youth have been taking a back seat in the region’s integration, Kisembo noted.
“There is an urgent need for the youth to rise and become front runners of this campaign.”
Kisembo thanked all authorities in Burundi for not only welcoming AMF but also embracing the idea.
Fabrice Niragira will head the AMF Burundi chapter. Fidelite Ngenzi will serve as general secretary, Frank Ndisanze (treasurer), Landry Nokira (publicity), Aldine Nezerwe (marketing).
AMF was launched in Uganda in 2013.It has since staged two half marathons in Kampala.
It spread out to Kenya last year where it staged a half marathon in Mombasa.
Source:The New Vision