The Confederation of Southern African School Sports Associations (COSASSA) Vice President Technical, Solomon Duiker, says Botswana is ready to host the games.
Speaking to the media following the COSASSA delegation’s tour of facilities where the games will be staged, Duiker said he was happy with the facilities.
The COSASSA VP Technical said that the venues presented to be used during the games are of a very high level.
“From the COSASSA side, I can say very straight forward that we are very happy. With ball games, it is a very different story because we have to use many different facilities, many different types of sports that will be played, and as such there are a few challenges,” the COSASSA official explained.
“I am very impressed with what I have seen here. There are a few hiccups. We are used to the fact that facilities amongst our countries are not of that high quality but the ones that I have seen here speak high volumes. The facilities I have seen here are better than the ones we played on in our previous COSASSA games,” Duiker said.
He said with member countries of COSASSA expected to bring large contingents of athletes for the games, a lot of pressure is on the COSASSA Local Organising Committee (LOC) to find many facilities and accommodation venues. He however said despite this, he is optimistic that everything will be ready in the coming two weeks and Botswana will host very successful games as they had never disappointed when hosting COSASSA games before. “There are few challenges that we need to take care of that I believe we can overcome as a unit, between us as the COSASSA Executive as well as the games LOC. The few challenges that are remaining are where the teams will be accommodated and which team will be staying where. Those things are not finalised but within the next two days when I leave Botswana, I will be able to inform all the participating member countries that yes, Botswana is waiting for you,” Duiker explained.
Meanwhile, the COSASSA VP Technical says at least five countries have confirmed their participation at the upcoming games. The countries are Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Swaziland.
Of the five countries, the COSASSA VP Technical said only three, being Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe will bring teams to compete in all events, while the other two will not bring big teams due to financial constraints. On other related issues, Duiker says they are busy revamping the COSASSA constitution to allow for other countries like South Africa to be part of the games. The South Africans have not competed in COSASSA games for the past six years as they do not have school sports associations like in other countries in the region. “We are busy revamping our constitution to allow South Africa to participate in the games,” he explained. He said they are also working hard to attract more countries like Angola and Zambia into the fold as they want to have at least ten countries participating in the games in the near future.