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05 March 2024

Celebrations planned for Ali’s 70th birthday

Ali continues to involve himself in various charitable ventures despite his ailment. (FILE)


Boxing icon Muhammad Ali will celebrate his 70th birthday in his hometown of Louisville, where the Muhammad Ali Center will mark the occasion with a series of events starting on January 14.

“On January 14, 2012, in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, Ali will be celebrating his 70th birthday among friends, admirers, and people who have made a difference in his life,” center officials said in a statement.

The fund-raiser is part of the center’s “Seven Days for Seven Decades” programme of community activities.

Ali, who was born Cassius Clay Jnr in Louisville on January 17, 1942, has homes with his wife, Lonnie, in Arizona and Michigan as well as Louisville.

In November, the heavyweight great was briefly hospitalised in Phoenix, where doctors treated him for dehydration.

That came a few days after Ali attended the funeral of his old rival Joe Frazier, who died of liver cancer in Philadelphia on November 8.

Ali, whose Parkinson’s disease has diminished his physical capacities in recent years, has nevertheless used his public stature to raise awareness of the illness and campaign for research funding.

He has also continued to involve himself in various charitable ventures and campaigned for boxing reform.

The Muhammad Ali Center, a cultural center that celebrates his life and career, opened in November of 2005.