Safaricom pumps millions to SOYA awards


Safaricom pumps millions to SOYA awards
Mr. Joe Ogutu, Chief Special Projects Officer, Safaricom PLC, (Left), sign a cheque worth 16 million shillings towards the 16th edition of Sports Of the Year Awards (SOYA). Receiving is Bismarck Mutahi- SOYA panelist, (middle) and Dr. Paul Tergat, Founder and chairman, SOYA, right.PHOTO/ Courtesy

In Summary

  • Safaricom has injected 16 million shillings towards the sponsorship of the 2019 Sports Personality of the Year Awards (SOYA) gala primed for January 24 next year.
  • The event which will be marking its 16th edition will also see the Sports Personality of the year 2019 walk away with Ksh1 million and will be held in Mombasa for the second year running.

Safaricom has injected 16 million shillings towards the sponsorship of the 2019 Sports Personality of the Year Awards (SOYA) gala primed for January 24, 2020.

The event which will be marking its 16th edition will also see the Sports Personality of the year 2019 walk away with Ksh1 million and will be held in Mombasa for the second year running.

Speaking during the cheque presentation ceremony held in Nairobi Tuesday, SOYA founder Paul Tergat lauded the telecommunication giant adding that the partnership will go a long way in refining the spirit of competition in Kenya’s sports.

“These awards are the highlight of the Kenyan sporting calendar and are growing each year to become a premier sports event. We are honoured to be associated with one of the biggest brands in the country.

Safaricom believed in my dream when I was still an active athlete and 16 years down the line, they continue to walk with us as we reward our sports personalities for their efforts throughout their season,” said the former long-distance runner.

The awards were first held in 2004 with six categories to recognize outstanding athletes across sporting disciplines, and the unique role that sports continue to play in shaping the Kenyan identity.

The gala have since grown to include 18 categories, celebrating male and female athletes as well as coaches, community heroes and sports federations across all disciplines.

Speaking during the event, Chief Special Projects Officer Joseph Ogutu noted that as a brand, Safaricom is extremely proud of the growth they have seen since the inaugural SOYA Awards.

“These awards rank second to Safaricom Lewa Marathon in terms of support from the company thanks to good organization and leadership we have witnessed over the years. The categories awarded keep all sports lovers hooked as they reach far and wide and recognize all disciplines. As a company, we are committed to supporting this initiative to greater heights,” he underscored.

Amongst the categories to be awarded include the Overall Sports Personality of the Year, Sportsman and Woman of the Year, Team of the Year for men and women as well as Federation of the Year. Others include Coach of the Year, Community Hero or Heroine usually recognized for their contribution to sports in the community, Hall of Fame and Sports Personalities Living with Disability.

Upcoming athletes are also recognized through Most Promising Award and the School Categories.

In the 15th edition held earlier this year at the Fort Jesus, Eliud Kipchoge emerged the best overall sportsman 2018.

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