NAIROBI, May 12 (Xinhua) -- Kenya's capacity to stage international sports competition in risky 2020 season will be a clear approval of the country's efforts to fight COVID-19.
Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed said on Tuesday in Nairobi that the move by World Athletics and Federation International de Automobile (FIA) to bring their premier international events in Nairobi is an endorsement of their battle to win the war against the global pandemic.
Kenya will host the Continental Tour in Nairobi on Sept. 26 and negotiations are ongoing to stage Safari Rally, a part of the World Rally Championship (WRC) in July.
Mohamed said it was important for the athletes and drivers to continue training and they will be informed on heath guidelines as Kenya plans to lift some of the restrictions put in place to flatten the virus from spreading.
"These events will serve as a fitting celebration of Kenya's and the world's triumph over adversity. Certainly, we will overcome the virus and this will show the appreciation of the sacrifices Kenyans made to secure a safe country post COVID-19 pandemic," Mohamed said on Tuesday in Nairobi.
Kenya will spend at least 106 million shillings (1 million U.S. dollars) on the one day Continental Tour to supplement on the 200,000 dollar prize purse that will be on offer to lure elite runners across the globe.
The World Under-20 Championships in Nairobi however, is still being rescheduled.
Kenya staged the last round of the World Youth Championship in Nairobi in 2017 drawing huge local support of over 60,000 fans to the stadium, which was hailed as confirmation of the country's enthusiasm with athletics.
FIA President Jean Todt, also said the return of the Safari Rally back to Kenya was inspired by their demand to make the championship truly global.
Safari Rally was the last part of the WRC back in 2002. It was readmitted this year and the first event was due on July 9.