University of Nairobi Crowned Kenyan Debate Champions

By Josiah Adiema Adiema

The University of Nairobi (UoN)-Parklands Campus has been crowned winners at the 2nd Kenya Intervarsity Debate Championship 2013.

In a 2 day event hosted by Strathmore University-Nairobi from 7th-8th June 2013, the UoN team comprising Bonbegi Gesicho and Eugene Kubally; representing the Opening Opposition valiantly fought off a stiff challenge from Edel Were and Willis Mwenda of Strathmore University who were the reigning 2012 champions.

Interestingly Edel was defending the title that she won last year at the inaugural event but it was a third time lucky for Bonbegi who was a runner-up in the Inaugural Kenya Intervarsity Debates as well as Kenya Human Rights Debates 2012.

The speech category was won by Sammy Osimbo of Africa Nazarene University. 1st and 2nd Runner up slots was taken by Elvis Kassam and Fiona Mwende respectively; all from Strathmore University.

The championship themed “Fostering Youth Engagement in Public Affairs” was graced by Johnson Mwakazi; a popular television anchor with Royal Media Services (Citizen Television), Jason Nyantino of MEDEVA (Media Development in Africa), Marvin Sissey of Business Insider Africa among other invited guests.

In his speech “Six Steps for Youth Empowerment”, Jason outlined the avenues through which the Kenyan youths must focus on to be empowered. Some of the areas he noted include, Political engagement, ICT, Agriculture,volunteering among others.

“The Youth must devise means for their relevance in public affairs engagement by ensuring that they do things that give them relevance. They must move out of their comfort zones for this to be attained”

Mwakazi on his part noted that the youth must be consistent in what they do for that is the only way that will make them relevant and distinct.

While acknowledging the steady footsteps that Kenya National Debate Council (KNDC) is developing, David Gray Kimaro; KNDC chairperson appreciated the various institutions which were present at the event, the judges, organizers and the partners/sponsors.

“This event has become this successful because you have believed in our dreams. We appreciate the partners for their input to make this event what we have seen over the last two days”

The event was organized by KNDC with partners like Strathmore University, Media Development in Africa (MEDEVA), Strathmore Debate Council, Anjarwalla and Khanna (ALN) who made a huge significance to its success.

The winning team is set to represent Kenya at the Nigerian-Calabar Edition of Pan African University Debate Championship (PAUDC) 2013 in December 2013.


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