The 52nd ordinary session of the Executrive Committee of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), held in Abuja, Nigeria, from 31 July to 3 August 2017, effectively chaired by ANOCA President, Intendant General Lassana Palenfo. The meeting afforded an ideal platform for ANOCA officials to chart the way forward for the African Olympic Movement, which has made youth development a focal concern. As such, the meeting, the first since the election of the new Executive Committee, sought to chart the ANOCA road map for the 2017-2020 Olympiad.
The opening ceremony featured three main speeches. The President of the Nigeria Olympic Committee, Habu Ahmed Gumel, set the ball rolling by heartily welcoming the participants.
He was succeeded by ANOCA President, Intendant General Lassana Palenfo, who thanked the Nigerian authorities for taking great interest in the organisation of the 52nd ordinary session of the Executive Committee of the supreme governing body of the African Olympic Movement in particular and sport in general. “It is not by chance that we chose Abuja to host the first meeting of our new Executive Committee elected for the 2017-2020 quadrennial. First and foremost, it shows that ANOCA acknowledges the highest authorities of this land for their sustained support, which creates the most enabling conditions for us to discharge our missions. We also intend to send a strong signal and express our profound desire to commune with all our stakeholders and partners. As a matter of fact, we want to demonstrate our commitment and devotion to make Abuja the hub of African sport,” he added.
In his opening address, the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Youth and Sports of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, representing the Minister, warmly congratulated the newly elected ANOCA Executive Committee members on behalf of the Federal Government. He then urged them to draw from their rich experiences take African sport to the next level.
Deliberations per se featured a good number of items.
In his policy message, ANOCA President, Intendant General Lassana Palenfo, began by welcoming all members elected for the 2017 –2020 quadrennial. He also requested each and every one to fully play their role for the progress of African sport. Lassana Palenfo further told his peers that their position warrants them to shift into full gear to implement youth development projects in Africa. “Today, considering achievements of previous successive mandates, we have got assets that we must build on and as such rise to the challenges awaiting us together. I am aware the challenges are legion, and there is no gainsaying they require constant and sustained efforts. Suffice it to note, from the outset, that it is no easy task; it requires, from all us us, real commitment and constant mobilisation, to enable us work for sport development and youth empowerment in Africa, ” the ANOCA President underscored, before adding: “We possess many assets to be able to address various challenges and implement our projects to the end. We just need to make appropriate use of them. Our team has got extensive experience within the African and international sport movement.”
This was followed by the progress reports of the Secretary-General, Eng. Ahmed Abou Elgasim Hashim and the Treasurer General, Ahmed Habu Gumel. Thereafter, participants scrutinised petitions on the representation of Zone 7 in the Executive Committee and analysed the ANOCA Constitution with respect to the duties of the Executive Committee.
Besides, Executive Committee members defined the overall vision of the Institution for the 2017-2020 Olympiad, which is based on the programme proposed to the elective General Assembly by Intendant General Lassana Palenfo. The latter also presented a report on exchanges with the African Union with respect to the All Africa Games and the related protocol agreement.
The following other reports were presented: the report on preparations for the 3rd African Youth Games (Algiers 2018), the report by the Chairman of the ANOCA Games Commission on the joint meeting held in Algiers and the report on the maiden Africa Beach Games.
Participants also reviewed preparations for the 33rd Seminar for Secretaries General of African NOCs billed for October 2017 in Cape Verde.
Besides, the Abuja deliberations also focused on the the round table organised by ANOCA, on 20 and 21 April 2017 to map out a workable winning strategy for Tokyo 2020. Such a strategy is expected to help African athletes better the record of 45 medals in Tokyo. With respect to this particular item, the President’s proposal that a one million dollar package be earmarked to facilitate the preparation of athletes was approved. In the same vein, Intendant General Lassana Palenfo announced that ANOCA has concluded partnerships, thanks to which several training centres in and out of Africa will host athletes and coaches to help them better prepare for Tokyo 2020.
The 53rd ordinary session of the ANOCA Executive Committee will hold in Kampala, Uganda.
The foundation stone for the construction of the Olympafrica Centre in Santa Cruz, Cape Verde, was laid on 17 October 2017.
On 13 and 14 August 2017, Burkina Faso was hit by a terrorist attack in a café-restaurant in the capital city, Ougadougou. Official reports indicate that 18 people died, amongst them 2 attackers, while 22 others were injured.