Preparations in full swing
The Ethiopian Olympic Committee (EOC) has announced that it has initiated a series of activities aimed at kick-starting preparations for the Paris Olympic event. Engaging key stakeholders, including regional states, city administrations, and various partners, the Committee is determined to facilitate comprehensive preparations for the upcoming Games.
As the highly anticipated Paris Olympic Games draw near, Ethiopia, a nation with an illustrious history of active participation since the Melbourne Olympics, is leaving no stone unturned in its quest for a triumphant campaign.
During a panel discussion, Ashebir Woldegiorgis (PhD), the president of the Ethiopian Olympic Committee, delivered an opening speech outlining the Committee’s plans. He emphasized the importance of organizing the Olympic torch relay program in different regions prior to the commencement of the Games, determining the starting point of the relay, and seeking valuable input for subsequent programs.
Ashebir further unveiled the establishment of several national committees exclusively dedicated to the Paris 2023 Olympic Games. Each committee has been entrusted with specific responsibilities, as revealed during the panel discussion.
The gathering shed light on three focal points that will serve as the bedrock of Ethiopia’s preparations, drawing inspiration from the nation’s commendable performance in continental and national competitions over the past four years.
The president underscored the imperative for Ethiopian athletes and experts to give their all in order to safeguard their interests and achieve improved results at the Olympic Games. The significance of providing athletes and coaches with ample training time was also highlighted, recognizing its pivotal role in their success.
Collaborating since last year, the Committee has joined forces with the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF), Ethiopians residing abroad, and the Ethiopian Embassy to diligently advance these preparations. A host of committees has been established, encompassing diverse areas such as revenue collection, travel and logistics, registration and accreditation, cultural and technical affairs, and public relations.
Looking ahead, the EOC has plans to engage in pre-Olympic activities across all regions and city administrations. This involves an Olympic torch relay to generate funds, bolster athlete morale, and rally unwavering community support.
A substantial budget of more than 213 million birr has been allocated to cover the entire duration of the preparations, from the momentous launch of the events until the exhilarating conclusion of the competitions.
Notably, both regional and city administrations expressed their satisfaction at the amicable resolution of the dispute between the Olympic Committee and the Athletics Federation.
Panel participants echoed the sentiment that a fair and transparent selection process for athletes and coaches is of paramount importance, acknowledging the historical controversies surrounding this crucial aspect.
The inaugural Olympic torch ceremony is scheduled to commence in the Tigray region on January 27, culminating in a spectacular closing ceremony in Addis Ababa on July 15, 2024.