Uganda’s celebrated long-distance runner – Joshua Kiprui Cheptegei was one of the six athletes, whom the country’s police force rewarded with ranks for outstanding performances at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
The colourful ceremony held on Wednesday at the Uganda Police Force headquarters – Naguru saw Cheptegei elevated to the rank of Assistant Superintendent of Police – ASP.
Cheptegei who won Gold in 5000m at the Tokyo Games was promoted to the same rank as Benjamin Njia – up from Inspector of Police – IP.
“I wish to announce that at its last sitting; the Police Authority approved the promotion of IP Joshua Cheptegei and IP Benjamin Njia to Assistant Superintendent of Police – ASP,” affirmed IGP Martin Okoth Ochola at Naguru on Wednesday.
“We are here to celebrate the achievements of the Police athletes, for the historic win; success, pride and jubilation – they brought to the force; our country; as well as the entire African continent during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
“As management, we decided to hold this function, particularly to convey our gratitude to all athletes who participated in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games -for the resilience and determination displayed when representing the country,” said IGP Ochola in a press release, circulated on December 22.
Ochola consoled athletes who didn’t excel at the Tokyo Games, saying the ‘force still recognised their outstanding achievement of participating in such a highly competitive event.’
“You already scripted history by your participation, and the pain you felt of not winning medals will be the motivation to win in the next event.
“I, therefore, implore you not to run away from the setbacks, but, run over them,” he added.
He added: “I forwarded their letter of Promotion to them.
“Similarly, in exercising the delegated powers from H.E. the President, I hereby promote the following subordinate officers, who participated in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, to various ranks of Corporal to Inspector of Police;
1 – No. 100 SPC Peruth Chemutai (Gold Medalist) is regraded to Police Constable and promoted from Police Constable to Inspector of Police – IP.
2 – No C/213 AIP Mercyline Chelangat is promoted from Assistant Inspector of Police to Inspector of Police – IP
3 – No. 48689 CPL Immaculate Chemutai is promoted from Corporal to Assistant Inspector of Police – AIP.
4 – No. 68197 PC Renny Shida is promoted from Police Constable to Assistant Inspector of Police – AIP.
IGP Ochola appealed to the newly promoted officers to take advantage of their fame to inspire the youth into exploring their athletics’ talents.
“…..this function and the games you participated in were not only about medals. Such events are more to do with the love for the game and developing our society. We therefore, implore you to use your talent and new ranks to inspire our youth by making them active and lure them from criminality.
“Secondly, we expect you to assist, advise and help our other local athletes to participate in future events, earn a living and also win medals. Games require teamwork because it takes all team members to give life to any sport,” he counselled.
He also applauded the coach staff for assembling a winning team.
“We are rejoicing because of the expertise you imparted into these sportsmen and women. Thank you for uniting, rising and lifting the spirits of the athletes and Ugandans.
“Let me, also take this opportunity to acknowledge the efforts of the parents, spouses and relatives of the athletes and all the other officials from the Uganda Athletes Federation – UAF, Uganda Olympics Committee – UOC and Ministry of Education & Sports who managed and took care of some of the needs of the athletes,” he said before wishing every one good health, long life, happiness during this year’s festive season.