Mayibuyi Athletic Club which compromises of more then 600 runners from various communities of eThekwini was establish on 26 April 2013. The athletic club is founded by Phoenix community leader and chairman of the Mayibuyi Youth Organisation which works closely with Phoenix youth, Siviwe Benya.

Benya said what motivated him to open the running club was his passion for running and sport. “I wanted to lead a healthy life style and set an example for my community members, in particular the youth. I also wanted to identify our local running talen, encourage the youth to engage in running as a sport thereby keeping them away from ills such as drugs and alchohol or engaging in criminal activities and to keep members of the comunnity physically and mentally fit”. The Mayibuyi Athletic Club has recruited over 600 runners with social runners and walkers particiapting in 5km, 10km and 15km races and professional runners particiapting in half marathons, ultra-marathons and the Comrades Marathon which is a 90km race event. “Our runners come from different communities in and around eThekwini areas including Phoenix, Chesterville, Kwa-Mashu, Durban North, Pinetown, Ndwedwe, Durban CBD, Umlazi, Inanda, Hammersdale and Newlands” said Benya.

Two years after the athletic club was established, members began particiapting in the Comrades Marathon in 2015. Benya was amongst the first group of runners to participate in the ultimate human race together with seven other fellow runners. “Since 2015, we ran and completed all our 5X Comrades Marathon Challenges. We are looking forward to achieve our green numbers and veterand titles. To date, we have about 23 club runners taking part in the Comrades Marathon each year,” Benya said. Memembers of Mayibuyi Athletic Club have also taken up various local challenges, including the 42.2km Verlum Challenge, 42.2 Deloitte Challenge, 52 Chatsworth Ultra Marathon, 42.2km Mandel Marathon, 42.2 Durban Ciy Marathon, a number of 21.1km race events and the 42.2km Soweto Marathon and 56km Two-Oceans Marathon in Cape Town.

Benya said that Mayibuyi A.C has managed to host an internantional race called ‘Peace in Africa’ half marathon at the Kings Park Athletic Stadium with 3500 participants. “The runners came from all walks of life – we had participants from USA, Russia, Gernamny, Italy, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Lesotho, Ghana, and locals from all provinces of the country. We began organising the big event since 25 May 2016 to prmote Africa Day. Annually, we co-ordinate this Peace in Africa half marathon with aim to respond to the root cause of Xenophobia that was experienced in Durban in 2016, ” said Benya.

“This purpose of this race is to educate African people to refrain from killing one another based on beliefs, language, colour of skin, gender and nationality. This year, Peace in Africa partnered with Discovery Vitality to host our annual race that was expected to take place on Sunday, 24 May 2020 registered with KZNA fixture, but due to the current Covid-19, this race has been cancelled until further notice,” he said.

Benya added, “The current situation of Covid-19 is really frustrating as our runners cannot train as a team and are restricted to running only certain kilometre. We have missed a number of race events and sadly could not host one of our major races to commemorate Africa Day 2020. However, we must adhere to all rules and regulations of the current lockdown to save our lives of our loved ones. We encourage club members to continue training as scheduled near their residential areas and discourage group training until our country is Covid-19 free and we can start training in groups again.”

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