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Zim hosts key ANOCA forum

President of ANOCA Zone VI, Alfred Foloko (left) and President of Zimbabwe Olympic Committee, Thabani Gonye flank Dr Egenia Chidhakwa who is a director in the sports ministry

The Zimbabwe Olympic Committee hosted The Association of National Olympic Committees in Africa (ANOCA) Zone VI Athletes' forum, a gathering of sports luminaries, in Victoria Falls over the weekend.

The event, heralded as pivotal in African sports, witnessed the convergence of delegates from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Malawi, Namibia, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The occasion served as a platform for the collective deliberation on the future of athletic development in the region.

ANOCA Zone VI, Alfred Foloko, in his opening address, unveiled a groundbreaking pilot project. "It is only fitting to have the first ANOCA Zone VI Athletes' forum in Zimbabwe, home to the most decorated African Olympian, Hon. Dr. Kirsty Coventry," he remarked.

Minister of Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Honourable Dr. Kirtsy Coventry, inaugurated the forum and underscored the importance of sharing best practices and formulating strategic frameworks for athlete development.

Notably, she also addressed the recent move by World Athletics to award gold medalists with a substantial prize of US$50 000 at the Paris Olympic Games, urging the delegates to deliberate on the implications of this development. "I urge you to discuss how you feel about this recent development and state your pros and cons," she tasked the delegates.

In response, the delegates articulated their position, asserting, "The overall takeaway was that this approach is welcomed and appreciated, and that this is hopefully a policy that should also be adopted by the IOC so that in future all Olympic medalists, no matter from which sport, receive monetary rewards." This sentiment reflects the delegates' belief that such incentives will validate the investment and sacrifices made by athletes, thereby enhancing the allure and significance of the Olympic Games.

The speakers included an International Olympic Committee expert, Arthur Milroy, communications expert, Mike Madoda, and strategy expert, Martin Dururu, who enriched the discourse with their insights and expertise.

Also present was Zimbabwe Olympic Committee chief executive officer Marlene Gadzirai.


The ANOCA Zone VI Athletes' forum stands as a testament to the unwavering commitment of the region to propel its sporting prowess to greater heights. The forum heralds a new dawn for African athletics, brimming with promise and ambition.



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