KH3-7 Hills Run: Absa Bank Uganda to sponsor top athletes for Run Your City Series in South Africa

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David GOMBE

Top athletes (both male and female categories) in the recently concluded Absa KH3-7Hills Run will be sponsored by Absa Bank Uganda to participate in the Johannesburg leg of the 2025 Absa Run Your City Series in South Africa.

The sponsorship among others, covers the travel expenses and participation fees for the two female athletes, Kareen Chemusto and Annet Chesang, who were the top performers in the KH3-7 Hills Run, as well as the top male athletes, Brian Ategeka and Aggrey Agaba.

The Absa KH3-7 Hills Run, which took place recently, showcased some of Uganda’s finest running talent, with Philip Kiptoo, emerging as the overall winner at the Run. The sponsorship is a testament to its commitment to supporting sports development and promoting a healthy lifestyle among Ugandans.

The Absa Run Your City Series is a popular event that attracts runners from across Africa and beyond. The Johannesburg leg is known for its challenging course and competitive field, making it the perfect opportunity for Ugandan athletes to showcase their skills against top athletes from around the world.

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Mumba Kalifungwa, the Managing Director of Absa Bank Uganda, speaking to why the bank chose this initiative said that the bank’s Citizenship ambition is to be an active force for good in the communities where it operates.

“Advancing education and youth employment as well as promoting a just society are some of our key citizenship pillars. Additionally, the 4th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) speaks to the need to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all while the 5th one speaks to achieving gender equality for all. We believe that this is our small contribution to achieving this goal in Uganda.”

Wilberforce Kyambadde the KH3 Hash Master said he was pleased with the momentum that the Absa KH3-7 Hills Run was gathering in only its second year, now even attracting professional runners.

This year’s marathon in particular has attracted participation from elite runners coordinated by the Cheptegei Development Foundation whose activities among developing local talent include targeted programmes like providing a safe haven for girls fleeing FGM in the Sebei region. Often, cultural practices like these also present a barrier for girls continuing with education.

The Marathon was flagged off by Rt. Hon. Thomas Tayebwa, the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, remarked that the ‘Run Her Race’ initiative was in line with the government agenda to promote girl child education and prioritised at the national level with the National Development Plan III making provisions to strengthen affirmative action for enrolment of girls in BTVET. Further, the government has allocated 30% of all funds under the new Parish Development Model to women.

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At the university level, the additional 1.5 points added to girls has seen a consecutive annual increase of girls enrolling and graduating from the university now surpassing boys.

“I would like to take this opportunity to appreciate all our partners and the runners who participated today. Last year we had over 2,500 take part and today we have surpassed that number. We thank you for your continued support of our initiatives. Last year’s funds were used to support over 2,750 girls with menstrual hygiene management, supporting teenage mothers to return to school with fully paid school fees, and skilling others to become self-sustainable with culinary skills, tailoring, knitting, and making liquid soap. We shall continue to support such initiatives that support girls to leverage their potential to become contributing members in their communities.” said Mr. Kalifungwa

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