The Kenyan Government, through the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage, is intent on utilising sports to continue profiling Kenya as the preferred sports, tourism and investment destination in the region.
Speaking at the end of the third round of the 2019 Magical Kenya Ladies Open presented by M-Pesa, Sports Principal Secretary (PS), Amb. Kirimi Kaberia, said that sports is increasingly becoming a global marketing tool via television broadcasting, making it a ready avenue for Kenya to showcase its diverse landscape and offering the country great international exposure.
“It is my belief that this kind of event, and other events like the Safari Rally, the World Under 20 Championships and many other activities that have taken place here will make a very big difference and as we go forward, more value is accrued to the country,” he said.
He added that there is a deliberate effort to build capacity among young, local broadcasters and content producers, to empower them with skills to produce content from global sporting events that are being held in Kenya for local and global consumption.
“For us, this is a very important event. You can see sport is becoming more and more a production for television. So, we are trying to work with our young people to create a wider base of understanding and skills so that we are able to continue producing these kinds of events for both local and international consumption,” he said.
Commenting on his impression of the inaugural Magical Kenya Ladies Open tournament, the PS expressed delight with the level of organisation and response that the event had received, adding that the occasion has provided Kenya with great international exposure.
“It is incredible. There is great response from the players that we have got here, there is also a great response from the local golfers. Looking at it from the outside, Kenya has had wonderful exposure and it is great value,” he said.
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He added that the tournament helped demystify the myth that professional golf in the country is a sport only for the few, saying that the participation of the local players was an inspiration to other lady golfers in the country.
“Golf has been viewed as an exclusive event, something that happens only out there for a specific group of people. Now we are seeing more and more inclusivity coming in. It (the Magical Kenya Ladies Open) is a ladies’ event, we have not had another ladies’ event at this level in the region and it is a very good thing that we have one now,” he said.
He added: “I think it is also a chance for our young, upcoming talent to grow and experience this. Seeing people like Wafula and others playing in the field was incredible. If you talk to those girls now, they are excited, they are ready and are raring to go and it gives us an even better chance to prepare them for more going forward.”
The Magical Kenya Ladies Open is sponsored by Magical Kenya, M-Pesa, Capital FM, KCB, Aquamist, East African Breweries, Turkish Airlines, Vipingo Development, KPA and Wilken.