Legendary Kenyan athlete Kipchoge Keino who voluntarily relinquished the National Olympic of Kenya (NOCK) Presidency will be remembered by the sport’s fraternity as a man who was loved and loathed in equal measure.
To some people, he was strict disciplinarian who could not stomach corruption and one who was only too eager to clamp down on thieving officials from the NOCK coffers.
During Kip Keino’s 18 year leadership at NOCK, Kenya was a dominant force especially in athletics and volleyball. Among his attributes during this period is that Kenya bagged 100 medals at the Olympics, 220 medals at the Commonwealth Games and 379 in various other global meetings.
Yet other people opined that Kip Keino was a pain in the neck for many because he had been overly reluctant to vacate office for young, energetic officials despite having spearheaded the body for close to two decades.
It can be recalled that during the run-up to yesterday’s NOCK election, Kip Keino had announced that he would be seeking for re-election a, a proclamation that sent tongues wagging before the 77-year-old legend rescinded his decision which left relatively youthful Paul Tergat and Patrick Muya to contest for the plum position.
A two-time Olympic god medalist Olympic gold medalist, Kip Keino took the leadership reins at NOCK in 1999 after replacing Charles Mukora with his immediate task being to oversee Kenya’s participation in the Olympic Games a year later in Sydney, Australia when the country scooped two gold, six silver, and six bronze medals.
Since then, Kenya has improved on these statistics with the country recording the best results in the 2016 Rio Olympics with a haul of six gold, six silver and one bronze medal.
After the end of an era in NOCK, Kip Keino will direct his energy on projects geared at giving back to the community and which he had been balancing while serving at the top hierarchy in NOCK Among these is Kipkeino Foundation, a non-profit organization which is tailored at advancing humanitarian and charitable efforts.
Besides the venture, Kip Keino alongside his wife Phyllis have dedicated significant efforts to humanitarian work in Eldoret where they have established the Lewa Children’s Home for orphans, the Kipkeino Primary and Secondary Schools.