ST GEORGE’S, Grenada – Grenada is preparing a massive homecoming for world and Olympic 400 metres champion Kirani James who will arrive in the island this evening.
There will be a welcome party of Government officials, family members as well as members of James local track and field club Speedzone, at the Maurice Bishop International Airport.
Chairperson of the planning committee Lana McPhael says all Grenadians have been invited to the airport ceremony.
“There is a subcommittee that is meeting as we speak putting the final touches in place,” said McPhael, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism.
“But we are hoping that Grenadians of all sectors would come out. We want to give kirani a massive welcome.”
The 19-year-old, also the reigning World champion, created history by securing Grenada’s first Olympic medal and the first gold for the OECS sub grouping.
The celebrations planned this weekend include a ceremony on Saturday at the Kirani James Boulevard, an area on the outskirts of the capital named in his honour after he won the World title in Daegu last year.
Also planned is a round-the-island motorcade passing through his west coast hometown of Gouyave and climaxing with a rally at the National Stadium in St George’s.
James turns 20 on Saturday and Government officials have said that a major surprise is in store for him.
“We have put a lot of plans together. We have been working hard. Kirani was on the circuit and he had a few races to complete,” said Veda Bruno Victor, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sports.
“He was supposed to finish on the sixth but decided against it … and decided he would stop.”
James is also expected to participate in the launch of a youth programme in his small home village of Gun Battle, located in Gouyave.
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