Shikongo, Benson shine at RASA Awards

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… Kaino in the mix

Otniel Hembapu
Windhoek

Namibia’s leading disabled athletes Ananias Shikongo and Johanna Benson were amongst the biggest winners during the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Annual Sports Awards held at the at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday.

Shikongo, who won three medals – a gold medal in the men’s T11 200-m race and two bronze in the T11 100-m events at last year’s Olympics in Brazil – walked away with the prestigious Sportsman of the Year with a Disability award while his compatriot Benson scooped the Sportswoman of the Year with a Disability award.

Namibia’s young Karate sensation Mayvonne Swart was also in the line-up and bagged the Junior Sportswoman of the Year award, while Namibian Sun’s former sport reporter Kaino Nghitongo walked away with the Sports Journalist of the Year accolade.
Saturday’s awards marked the 2nd edition of the AUSC Regional Annual Sport Awards (RASA that recognised last year’s top sports achievers within the 10-member states of the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5.

The ten member states are Namibia, Angola; Botswana; Lesotho; Malawi; Mozambique; South Africa; Swaziland; Zambia and Zimbabwe – who all gathered at a black-tie event at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference in Johannesburg.

AUSC Region 5 has a constitutional mandate to recognise and deliver to the region’s vision of being Africa’s leading sport region through innovation and excellence embodied in the RASA awards. Therefore, the awards were a befitting celebration of Pan-Africanism and a memorable occasion to celebrate our African heritage, AUSC said.
The awards also fit strategically in with the May celebration of Africa month on the continent, as it is a tangible affirmation of giving depth to the AU’s programme of serving African aspirations to carve a proper place for the continent in the world.

The other winners are as follows:
Wayde Van Niekerk (Sportman of the Year)
Caster Semenya (Sportswoman of the Year)
Ananias Shikongo (Sportsman of the Year with a Disability)
Johanna Benson (Sportswoman of the Year with a Disability)
Anna Botha (Coach of the Year)
Karabo Sibanda (Junior sportsman of the Year)
Mayvonne Swart (Junior sportswoman of the Year)
Mamelodi Sundowns (Team of the Year)
Kaino Iyaloo Nghitongo (Journalist of the Year)

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