Legendary Ethiopian Runner Haile Gebrselassie Eyes Run for Presidency

Ethiopia's legendary distance runner Haile Gebrselassie is considering a run for the presidency. (Google Images)

Ethiopia’s legendary distance runner Haile Gebrselassie is considering a run for the presidency. (Google Images)

Oliver Brown of The Telegraph UK is reporting that legendary Ethiopian long-distance runner Haile Gebrselassie is considering a run for the presidency of his home country. Gebrselassie, who has held 27 world records believes that he has a lot to share with his country through the experiences afforded him from a stellar athletic career. The wildly popular athlete could potentially unify a country marked by political conflict and turmoil.

Most recently, Ethiopia’s prime minister Meles Zenawi died last August leaving the country reeling and the international community wondering what would happen to a country that worked closely with anti-terrorism efforts against Muslim extremists, but was still oppressive in other ways, like silencing and jailing journalists that critiqued the government and other human rights abuses.

Brown writes:

“In a repressive political climate, where only one opposition member is accepted into the 547-seat parliament, he could create a potent unifying effect. “Sometimes politicians say too much about what they’re doing,” he argues. ‘But sport is black and white: either you win or lose, either you break a record or not. You cannot tell people more than you have achieved. In politics, you can say a lot.'”‘

Read more at The Telegraph UK.

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