Increased doping cases worry Malawi Sports Minister

Minister of Youth and Sports Development Grace Obama Chiume has expressed worry with the increased number of athletes failing doping test in the African Union Sports Council Region 5, urging the region to double its efforts in educating athletes on dangers and effects of doping.

Chiumia giving the key note address during the meeting
Chiumia giving the key note address during the meeting
George Jana speaking during the meet.
George Jana speaking during the meet.

Chiumia made the observation recently, when she opened an executive committee meeting for the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5, formerly known as Supreme Council for Sports in Africa (SCSA) Zone VI at Golden Peacock Hotel in Lilongwe.

“Our region is recording an increased number of athletes failing doping tests. This is a sign that we have to double our efforts to educate our athletes against doing. It is my hope, as Sports Minister
that the region will put more emphasis on athletes’ education than conducting doping tests,” said Chiumia.

Chiumia urged the meeting delegates to also look at ways and means of improving the performance of athletes from the region during international competitions.

The Sports Minister commended National Aids Commission, TNM, Malawi Enterprise Development Fund (MEDF), Pacific Hotels and Techno Brain for their financial and material contribution towards the successful hosting of the meeting.

Speaking on behalf of the AUSC Region 5 executive board, vice chairman of the grouping George Jana expressed the board’s commitment towards meeting the minimum target of 16 gold medals at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games as set by the AUSC Region 5 Council of Ministers.

“We have been given a target of winning a minimum of 16 gold medals at the Rio Games and 20 gold medals during the 2020 Olympics. As we plan our programmes during the meeting, we will be putting much focus towards achieving this goal,” said Jana, who is also executive secretary for Malawi National Council of Sports.

The executive meeting drew sports officials from nine of the ten AUSC Region 5 member countries. Before starting their business, the delegates observed a minute silence in honour of the departed Zambian President Michael Sata.

During the meeting, Zimbabwe was expected to give a progress report on preparations for the AUSC Region 5 Under 20 Games expected to be held in Bulawayo from December 5-14 this year.

The games will involve the following member countries: Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and the hosts Zimbabwe.

The following non-member countries are also expected to participate as invited guests: Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Madagascar, Mauritius and Seychelles.

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