Cameroon born Marathoner Afowiri Kizito Fondzenyuy said that running in Tokyo Japan will be a special experience for him.
Afowiri who is also known as the Toghu Marathoner will mark his 17th marathon in Japan, having previously covered 673 kilometers in marathons across Europe, America and Australia.
“Tokyo is special”, he said, adding that “It will be my sixth world major marathon and I’ll be earning six-star major marathoner badge afterwards”
“The badge is important, but the main goal is to help build the Tsenmah and Ndzenkov bridges in Ngondzen Community in Cameroon”
The two bridges Afowiri is running to raise money for are made of planks that are almost rotten and according to the village head, Shu Fai Lun the bridges have almost collapsed with the community cut off from others because both cars and motorcycles cannot run on them.
Shu Fai Lun said that during the rainy season, children miss school because it is too risky to cross the bridges and farmers find it difficult to visit their farms resulting in losses.
He called on people of goodwill around the world to support the Toghu Marathoner as he runs to help them build new bridges.
During his other 16 marathons, Afowiri Fondzenyuy has raised money for various causes ranging from education, autism research, aid for Ebola victims, construction of school blocks, amongst others.
Afowiri said that it is okay for him to be the one running the 42.2 kilometers of the Tokyo marathon as long as the children and women of Ngondzen can end up passing through a well constructed bridge afterwards.
“This is my thing and I want to keep running as long as my legs can carry me”
“I want to run on all continents and I want to also experience running a marathon in Antarctica”, he said.
The Tokyo Marathon, which is one of the world’s six majors, will be held on Sunday March 3, 2024. The other five are Berlin, London, Athens, Chicago and Boston marathons, which Afowiri had previously completed.
He earned the title of the Toghu Marathoner for running marathons wearing Toghu, a native attire of people of the North West region of Cameroon.
Tokyo will be his fifth marathon in Toghu with the first being in London followed by Athens, Boston and Sydney.