UNAMID and North Darfur Horse Racing Union organize competition to promote social cohesion
On 16 December 2016, UNAMID’s Community Outreach Unit (COU), in collaboration with the Horse Racing Union, North Darfur, organized a race as part of the Mission’s ongoing outreach activities to promote peaceful coexistence and social cohesion across Darfur. Additionally, the occasion marked the start of the horse racing season in Darfur, which will continue until 25 May 2017 and includes 15 more such competitions, in total.
The event, held as part of the Mission’s Darfur-wide campaign, “No life without peace,” was attended by more than 2,000 people including community members, Government of Sudan officials and UNAMID staff.
The Mission was represented by UNAMID Deputy Joint Special Representative (DJSR) - Political, Kingsley Mamabolo, while Kamal Abushouk, Minister for Urban Planning, attended the occasion on behalf of the Wali (governor) of North Darfur.
Addressing the gathering, DJSR Mamabolo highlighted the value of sport as a tool in settling differences between communities and promoting peaceful coexistence. “I commend today’s effort as an important tool in spreading the message of peace amongst the local community,” he said.
Additionally, the DJSR reiterated that the Mission will continue supporting sport activities as part of its efforts towards building sustainable peace, stability and prosperity among Darfuri communities.
On his part, Brigadier Abushouk commended UNAMID for its consistent sponsorship of sport-based activities in Darfur.
Horse racing is one of the most popular sports in Darfur. It has been practiced in the region for more than 4,000 years and remains an important part of Sudanese culture. Similar races are scheduled to be held in Mellit, Kabkabiya, El Sereif, Saraf Umra, Kutum and Shangil Tobaya, all in North Darfur, in the upcoming months.