Nairobi — The Kenya Amateur Weightlifting Association (KAWF) is hosting the Senior Africa Weightlifting Olympic qualifiers in Nairobi from May 24-31.
The event, which was initially scheduled to be held in Madagascar in March was moved to Nairobi to enable African countries attempt their qualifications to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games before the final Olympic qualification date on 31st May, 2021.
Fourteen countries from the continent are expected to take part in the full week high level event bringing together 100 athletes, with more than half (57) already arrived and 20 officials to the city.
Algeria will be presenting its full team of Team A and B, with Team A already in the country and Team B expected later in the day. By midweek, a full contingent of all the teams will be in the country to join with Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, Uganda and hosts, Kenya which are already on the ground.
Nairobi will also be hosting the Weightlifting Association of Africa (WFA) Electoral Congress on the sidelines of the weeklong tournament on Tuesday to choose its leadership.
Currently, the continental body has its President and Secretary General coming from Libya.
The elections will be overseen by the Secretary General of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), Jaloud Mohamed.
Meanwhile, the African Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOCA) is holding its General Assembly in Cairo, Egypt from 23rd May, 2021.
The Kenyan delegation of President Paul Tergat and Ag. Secretary General, Francis Mutuku were joined by former NOC-K Chairman and IOC Honorary Member, Dr. Kipchoge Keino as well as renowned athlete and 2016 Chief de Mission of IOC Olympic Refugee Athletes, Tegla Loroupe.
Addressing the ANOCA General Assembly, IOC president, Dr. Thomas Bach assured the world that comprehensive countermeasures have been put in place for the Tokyo Summer Olympics for the safety of athletes and all the delegations to the global event from July 23 to August 8, 2021.
The IOC President underscored that the measures, contained in the event Playbook have been developed with great scientific research input and learnings from various sports events over the last one year.
While it was not mandatory for athletes to the games to be vaccinated, Dr. Bach urged countries to the Games to vaccinate them ahead of the Games, encouraging everyone to embrace the required sacrifices that have to be made, including more stringent rules and measures in various countries.