‘Go back to school’: Former world champ Barsosio mourns Moi


'Go back to school': Former world champ Barsosio mourns Moi
Former World 10,000m champion Sally Barsosio. (PHOTO/World Athletics/Courtesy)

In Summary

  • As a young girl former 10,000m Women’s world champion Sally Barsosio met former President late Daniel Arap Moi and kept fond memories of how he challenged her to go back to school and concentrate on her education despite her running talent
  • At 14, armed with a record of the youngest ever medalist for Kenya at the international stage after winning the bronze medal at the World Junior Championships in Athletics held in Seoul

As a young girl former 10,000m Women’s world champion Sally Barsosio met former President late Daniel Arap Moi and kept fond memories of how he challenged her to go back to school and concentrate on her education despite her running talent.

At 14, armed with a record of the youngest ever medalist for Kenya at the international stage after winning the bronze medal at the World Junior Championships in Athletics held in Seoul, South Korea, she went on to take home the bronze medal a year later at the 1993 World Championships in Athletics held at the Gottlieb Daimler Stadium, Stuttgart, Germany clocking 31:15.38 and with that came a date with the president.

“I met mzee when I was only 15 years old, when we went to state house after the world athletics championship where we were awarded and when he saw me, he asked, if even this girl was out there in search of money, he ordered me to go back to school which I did and even when times got tough, his words encouraged me to go on,” Barsosio told Citizen Digital.

From that time when she was in class seven Barsosio was able to conclude her secondary education with ease but not before returning to the world championships in 1995 taking 11th place and in 1997 when she won the 10,000m gold medal, becoming the first Kenyan woman to win a senior track title a win that made her the youngest ever world champion of the 10,000m.

“The love for education that was mounted on me also encouraged me to take my children to Kabarak school where I was sure they would meet my mentor who is also the patron, and true to that he has also been able to give confidence to my young ones.

“At many times during parents Day Mzee would shake every child’s hand and give them a bible, and if you came to my house now you would really witness that,” she added.

She says Moi’s love for sports will never be forgotten.

“When Moi came to the stadium during athletic events, and you see him lift his Rungu definitely that gave someone extra energy and you would now he expects you to win,” she said

The former president Moi passed on Tuesday 4th February.

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Story By Philip Muchiri
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