MASERU — Lesotho athlete Motlokoa Nkhabutlane will be the first local athlete to compete in the Boston Marathon in the United States next April. The United States Embassy in Lesotho said Nkhabutlane
has been selected to represent Lesotho in the 2012 edition of the marathon owing to his successful performances in recent years.In a press statement, the embassy said Nkhabutlane would be sponsored by Shared, an American non-profit organisation dedicated to improving global health for the world’s poorest by increasing the availability of essentials of good health — medicines, medical supplies, medical equipment and community gardens.
The US Embassy in Maseru said it had worked with Shared to interview and select candidates for “this incredible 1opportunity”.
It said Nkhabutlane’s participation in the marathon is part of Shared’s launch of the “Run for the Future of Lesotho” campaign, which aims to provide medicines, medical supplies and medical equipment to help Basotho orphans.
Nkhabutlane has been one of Lesotho’s most successful distance runners in recent years. He won the Cape Town Marathon in 2008 and came third in the 2010 Gaborone City Marathon. He will leave Lesotho in mid-March to begin
training in Boston. While in the US, Nkhabutlane will address audiences about life in Lesotho, especially the impact of HIV/Aids on the country.
The Boston Marathon is an annual 42-kilometre race hosted by the American city of Boston on Patriots Day, the third Monday of April. It is the world’s oldest and best-known road racing events, alongside the Berlin, Chicago, London and New York marathons. The Boston Marathon attracts about 20 000 participants each year. This year 26 895 athletes entered the race.