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Sterling Morton Award.[xxv] Wangari Maathai was elected as the first president of the African Union’s Economic, Social and Cultural Council in March 2005.[xxvi] Maathai was selected as the Goodwill Ambassador to the Congo Basin Forest and Ecosystem in 2005.[xxvii] She was elected by 11 respective presidents to the Congo area, as the region’s Goodwill Ambassador.[xxviii] In 2006, Maathai wrote Unbowed: a memoir.[xxix] The book documented the accounts of a girl with the background of central highlands Kenya, becoming the first woman to receive a Ph D in East and Central Africa and going onto becoming a university’s head of department in Kenya.

The book details Maathai’s numerous confrontations with the repressive Kenyan government and the manner by which she believed that planting trees could empower local communities.[xxx] The previous president of Kenya, Daniel arap Moi, regarded Maathai as a problem, and perceived her Green Belt Movement to have been “subversive” during the 1980s.[xxxi] Along with her fellow female Nobel laureates to the likes of Jody Williams, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, Mairead Corrigan, Shirin Ebadi and Betty Williams, Maathai initiated the Nobel Women’s Initiative in 2006.[xxxii] Wangari Maathai received numerous honorary degrees from various academic institutions across the world, namely William’s College, Massachusetts in 1990; Hobart & William Smith Colleges, New York in 1994; the University of Norway in 1997; Yale University in 2004;[xxxiii] the University of Pittsburgh in 2006; and finally awards from the French Legion of Honour and Japan’s Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun.[xxxiv] Maathai was elected to parliament with 98% of the votes.[xxxv] Shortly thereafter she was appointed as Assistant Minister for Environment, Natural Resources and Wildlife in Kenya’s ninth parliament by the president.[xxxvi] Wangari Maathai represented the Tetu electorate in the Kenya parliament between 20.[xxxvii] The Congo Basin Fund appointed Maathai to be its co-chair in 2007.[xxxviii] The fund was developed by the British and Norwegian states, and is concerned with the well being and protection of Congolese forests.[xxxix] In 2008, Maathai was driven out of the Kenyan government, and was struck with tear gas by the Kenya police in the midst of a protest against “the excesses of Kenya’s entrenched political class”.[xl] Maathai’s refusal to be silenced by her repressive government and particularly vocal nature[xli] meant that she was politically sidelined after serving only one term.[xlii] In 2009, Maathai released The Challenge for Africa, a book provided a detailed analysis of the complex nature of the African continent, as a whole.[xliii] Maathai thoroughly examines the most shocking “bottlenecks to development in Africa” present on individual, national and international platforms, in terms of cultural upheaval, poverty and environmental degradation.[xliv] Furthermore, Maathai goes on to explore what Africans can and desperately need to do for themselves, in terms of Africa responsibility and accountability.[xlv] In December 2009, the United Nations Secretary-General gave Maathai recognition for her unrelenting devotion to the protection of the environment and combating climate change efforts, and gave bestowed upon her the United Nations Messenger of Peace.[xlvi] The Millennium Development Goals Advocacy Group selected Maathai onto its panel in 2010. Available: ↵ [xii] Wangari Maathai – Biographical [Online].

For the first time in history, Kenya obtained medals in the hurdles and field events through Yego and Boniface Mucheru, respectively, as well as the women's marathon title from Jemima Sumgong.

This was the nation's eleventh appearance at the Olympics, except the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal and the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow because of the African and United States boycott.

As usual, athletics had the largest team by sport with 48 athletes, roughly more than half of the nation's full roster size.

The Kenyan roster was merely highlighted by five past Olympic medalists, including world record holder David Rudisha in the men's 800 metres, middle-distance runner Asbel Kiprop, steeplechasers Brimin Kipruto and Ezekiel Kemboi, and four-time Olympian Vivian Cheruiyot, who previously won two medals in long-distance running at London 2012.

Meanwhile, Conseslus Kipruto surpassed the defending champion Kemboi to earn Kenya's eleventh overall title in the men's 3000 m steeplechase.

Kemboi, who initially won bronze to become the first steeplechaser with three Olympic medals, was eventually disqualified for stepping off the track at the water jump phase.

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