Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
THE Binga community has set up a Rabson Mulombe Sports Academy in a bid to raise funds for the 74-year-old first black athlete to represent Zimbabwe in the Olympics in 1964.
Mulombe recently told Chronicle Sport that he had turned to fish poaching at Kariba Dam, a few kilometres from the Bulawayo Kraal, to fend for his family.
He has largely been forgotten by the nation that he represented during the pre-Independence era in many local, regional as well as that dream Olympics event in Tokyo, Japan.
He competed in the full marathon where a cramp saw him eventually finishing 56th in a time of 2 hours 49 minutes 30.8 seconds, way outside his personal best of 2 hours 18 minutes 53.7 seconds.
“We have set up this academy to assist in our little way this hero from Binga who is actually a national treasure. The Binga Kasambabezi Festival and its partners will strive to undertake fundraising initiatives by working with like-minded people to honour our athletics hero. The sports academy will also be used to promote sports in the district which may not necessarily be athletics, but even football, pool and darts, among other disciplines,” said Ronald Siamwamwata, a member of the festival who also works in the Ministry of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation.
Besides the academy, a bank account has also been opened by one of the festival’s partners and a mobile telecommunications company donated a line.