09 JUNE 2019
MEC DUBE-NCUBE CONGRATULATES COMRADES MARATHON RUNNERS, THRILLED AT THE KZN ECONOMIC AND TOURISM PROSPECTS
KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs Nomusa Dube-Ncube has congratulated the 20 000-odd runners for their participation in the 94th edition of the 87 kilometre-long Comrades Marathon up-run race from Durban to Pietermaritzburg.
MEC Dube-Ncube also heaped praised at the winners; Edward Mothibi for his maiden win in the men’s race and Gerda Steyn for her feat in the women’s race. For her win at 5:58:53 Steyn also broke a 13-year-old record of 6:09:23 held by Russian Elena Nurgalieva thus becoming the first woman to run the race just under six hour for the up-run. She finished 17th overall.
Mothibi beat perennial winner Bongumusa Mthembu, a KZN citizen by 25 second to the finish line.
“I’m glad that the winners’ medals went South Africans. Gerda in particular has made South African women proud with her efforts and sterling performances. She repeated the same feat after winning the Two Oceans Marathon two months ago. This race is indeed about the spirit of endurance, Ubuntu displayed by the majority of runners and lifetime friendships as they root for each other along the grueling and treacherous route,” said Dube-Ncube.
The Leader of Government Business was equally thrilled at the economic and tourism impact the annual race was creating for the entire province. She said the ultra-marathon continues to promote KwaZulu-Natal as a leisure and events destination.
“The Comrades Marathon is also a very important event for the province in terms of economic impact and tourism at large. We have seen thousands of tourists as well basking in the glorious weather of our province as a result of the marathon. We learnt also from the Comrades Marathon Association that this year’s instalment is expected to boost the economy of KwaZulu-Natal by R700 million. That cash injection also hopefully trickles down to communities along the route of the race,” said Dube-Ncube.
ISSUED BY THE MINISTRY OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, TOURISM AND ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS IN KZN
For more information contact Mr Nathi Olifant on 072 292 2502 or 060 970 5113.