In a well-attended memorial service at St Andrews Church, Nairobi, Kenyans from all walks of life listened as speaker after speaker gave an account of the impact the late sports administrator Charles Nderitu Mukora had on sports and his work to improve the sector not only in Kenya but in also on the continent and the world at large.
Mukora is regarded as perhaps one of the most decorated sports administrators in Kenyan history.
Mukora was an all-rounder in the world of sports.
He represented Kenya in long jump, triple jump, decathlon and football.
He will be remembered as an outstanding coach who coached the nation’s immensely successful 1968 and 1972 Olympic squads to the Mexico and Munich Games and the 1970 Commonwealth Games squad to Edinburgh, Scotland.
He also coached the first Africa athletics team against the USA track team in North Carolina. Mukora was the architect of and instrumental in the setting up of the first High Altitude Training Camp in Nyahururu, Laikipia District in preparation for the 1968 Mexico Olympic Games.
Among the many caps that he donned were - as a council member of the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF); Chairman of Kenya Amateur Athletics Association (KAAA); Chairman of the East and Central Africa Athletic Board; Chairman of the Kenya National Sports Council; Chairman of the 1987 All Africa Games; Chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya; Chairman of the Kenya Para-Olympic Committee; Vice Chairman of the Commonwealth Games Federation and a member of the International Olympic Committee.
Professor Sam Ongeri eulogised Mukora who chaired the committee set up for the development of Nyayo National Stadium and played an important role in negotiating for a grant for Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani as a dedicated administrator who understood the value of sports to a nation and its people.
He fondly remembered working closely with the late Mukora in running athletics in Kenya.
Among those who sent messages of condolences is former President of the Republic of Kenya Mwai Kibaki who attributed most of Kenya’s success in various sports to Mukora.
The Principal Secretary for Sports and Culture Ambassador Kirimi Kaberia represented his ministry in paying tribute to Mukora.
Athletics Kenya President Retired Lt General Jackson Tuwei, Chairman of the Kenya National Sports Council Nderitu Gikaria and New KCC Chairman Matu Wamai were among those who shared their memories of the late Mukora and his contribution to sports both locally and internationally.
Tributes also came from Major Rtd Masden Madoka, a former chairman of Amateur Boxing of Kenya and current National Olympic Committee of Kenya president Dr Paul Tergat.
In 2010, Mukora was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, a degenerative brain disease that has no known cure. He passed away on December 27, 2018 and will be buried today at his Marua home in Nyeri County.