Emotional start to “The Agnes Tirop Conference” as Ndereba calls out Perpetrators of GBV

KWALE, Kenya, Jan 17 – The Agnes Tirop Conference in Diani got off to an emotional start in Kwale County amidst the declaration to mitigate Gender Based Violence (GBV) in sports.

Speaking Monday when handing over the Gender Welfare in Sports report to Sports CS Amina Mohamed, chairperson of the committee legendary Catherine Ndereba, broke into tears as she recounted the unfortunate demise of 2015 World Cross Country champion, Agnes Tirop who was brutally murdered in a suspected gender-based violence.

The Agnes Tirop Conference has brought together sporting stakholders in South Coast to celebrate achievements made in advancing gender equity in sports.

“Silence no more. We do not want to see any more gender-based deaths. We must come together and work as a team to ensure that the vice is a thing of the past,” Ndereba, a former World Record holder in the women’s marathon lamented.

Legendary Catherene Ndereba, who is also the Chair of the Gender, Welfare in Sports Committee, being consoled by Athletics Kenya CEO Susan Kamau during the Agnes Tirop Conference in Diani, Kwake County.

Sports PS Joe Okudo on his part said: “Today is a new beginning in gender equality and as the legend Eliud Kipchoge would put it- no human is limited. Also as demonstrated by Nderaba’s emotional remarks, we can mitigate this vice once and for all if we came together as stakeholders.”

The Commette on Gender Welfare in Sports set up by CS Amina on July 10, 2021 after a basketball coach was accused of sexually harassing players, presented the report to the Cabinet Secretary.

CS Amina vowed to implement the recommendations on the report where the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (ODPP) to fast track investigations and prosecution of reported perpetrators of Gender-Based Violence in the sports industry.

Meanwhile, song and dance marked the start of the Conference at the Diani Reef Resort in South Coast.

Sports CS speaking during the Agnes Tirop Conference in Diani

Those who are fortunate enough to grace the official opening of this auspicious occasion three-day workshop will surely not forget the startling and emotional experience from the visually impaired lady musician Crystal Asige’s song “Najijua” which she wrote to address gender based issues in the society. 

Earlier, a group of kids comprising of Laisha Wambui, Ariyana Sehmi, Lian Nganga, Biance Jenni, Irene Kamau and Sandra Chadota caused quite a stir with a presentation tailormade to honor the slain athlete Tirop.

The event was graced by the parents of slain athlete Tirop and her siblings as well as athletics stars led by Olympic champions Eliud Kipchoge and Faith Kipyegon, steeplechase Olympic bronze medallist Hyvin Kiyeng and two-time World Cross Country and World Half champion, Geoffrey Kamworor among others.

President Uhuru Kenyatta giving his address online during the Agnes Tirop Conference

President Uhuru Kenyatta gave his speech online, saying that his government is committing to end GBV.

Justice Njoki Ndung’u, representing the Chief Justice Martha Koome during the Agnes Tirop Conference in Diani

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