ACOLOP happy with Lusofonia Infra

PTI, PANAJI | 11 May 2013 17:21 IST

The association of Portuguese speaking nations, ACOLOP, today expressed satisfaction at the preparations for the Lusofonia Games to be held in Goa from November 2-10.

Alex Wong, president of ACOLOP, expressed satisfaction at the progress of work on infrastructure though Mario Rosa, the general secretary, chose to refrain from making a definitive statement whether it was practical to defer the Games in case of delay in completion of various stadia required for the nine-discipline Games. 

The members of the governing council said that they believed in the local organising committee which has assured them that the infrastructure would be ready on time. 

"Yes, we're satisfied so far, but this morning we had a lot of questions for the the Organising Committee (headed by CEO Keshav Chandra, Secretary (Sports), government of Goa). Since last year till now there has been progress though the process is little delayed," Wong remarked before adding "all members of ACOLOP recognise the efforts of GOA (Goa Olympic Association), organising committee and the government of Goa". 

Wong conceded that the technical committee of ACOLOP which visited the state about a fortnight ago had listed some problems which have been verified with some differences. 

Mario Rosa said the work was delayed but had "full trust in the organising committee". 

"Every month we'll get a report on the progress of work and the council will meet in mid-August to evaluate all that has been done and what is left." 

With ACOLOP now fully committed to the Games in Goa, Mario asked the media to be vigilant saying, "We have reached a point of no return, the Games will be held in Goa, all of us have to work together." 

Mario also admitted that a few countries which do not have embassies in India were having difficulty in visa processing and they were working closely with the External Affairs Ministry. 

Asked about the possibility of postponing the Games, Mario said he was confident of the competence of Goa, but added that if a situation arises whereby the work on infrastructure is beyond schedule, the council will decide on a postponement at that point of time. 

"Our mission is to have the infrastructure in place, if there are any problems we will assume responsibility, but if we give up half the way, the Organising Committee will not feel encouraged." 

Shripad Naik, president of GOA, however, said it was not possible to change the dates of the Games. 

Meanwhile, official intimation of the Games has been extended to all the participating countries, organises said. 

The Lusofonia Games is a multi-sport event organised by the ACOLOP, which involves athletes coming from Portuguese-speaking nations, formerly ruled by the colonial power. The participating countries, besides hosts India, include Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Macau (China), Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome and Principe, Equatorial Guinea and Sri Lanka.

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