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K’Ogalo’s ‘Gattuso’ awarded

Gor Mahia’s combative midfielder Collins Okoth is the 2015 winner of the Obonyo Foundation Determination Award.

Okoth was named winner of the award early this week. The player was presented with the award, which comes with a trophy and an undisclosed amount of prize money, at the team’s training session at the Nairobi City Stadium on Wednesday.

The player was recognized for his constant efforts in utilizing his football talent, and for being an inspiration to many people despite his humble background.

The foundation’s chairman Raphael Obonyo said that he had monitored Okoth’s performance over the years, and that the other members of the foundation approved the choice of Okoth as this year’s winner.

“I know that he (Collins) has had certain challenges with regards to discipline, but the fact that he has been able to consistently perform well even after he almost quit football is something that needs recognition,” Obonyo, who also doubles up as the External Adviser, UN Habitat’s Youth Advisory Board said during the awarding ceremony.

“He is a shining example of what young people can achieve with determination. Also, Collins is a representation of the talent that abound among young Kenyans that needs to be nurtured and supported.”

Okoth becomes the third recipient of the annual award after Lilian Wanjiru, an advocate for education in Kenya’s rural areas, received the inaugural award in 2013.

Fredrick Ooko, an entertainment personality who seeks to empower young girls living in the slums to discover and utilise their talents, won the award last year.

The Obonyo Foundation is an organization that was created in 2008 which seeks to recognize and reward young people who are products of Nairobi’s slum areas but who have defied drug abuse and poverty and curved out a niche for themselves.