GNPC boosted with Para sport equipment
By Cherno Omar Bobb
The Gambia National Olympics Committee (GNPC) has been boosted with Para sport equipment by World Para Powerlifting, International Federation for the Sport of Powerlifting for Athletes With Disabilities in collaboration with Zhangkong Baarbell Company of China.
The Powerlifting equipment were donated through the International Paralympics Committee (IPC) Powerlifting Grant from the Zhangkong Baarbell Company of China.
The donated materials includes 1x Para Powerlifting bench, 1x Para Powerlifting bar, 2x Para Powerlifting collars, 2x Para Powerlifting disc racks, 4x 25kg Para Powerlifting discs, 2x 20 kg Para Powerlifting discs, 2x 15 kg Para Powerlifting discs, and 2x 10 kg Para Powerlifting discs.
Sainey Camara, Secretary General of The Gambia National Olympics Committee (GNPC), said development of Para sports is unique and an important element of the sporting agenda for The Gambia. He added that impairment does not deter one to retire from any active work that is meaningful to once livelihood.
He thanked donors and assured them that they would put the equipment into good use to promote not only Para Powerlifting and rowing, but general Para Sports in The Gambia.
Samson Deen, President, Africa Paralympics Committee, said they have been yearning for such equipment for the development of Para sports in Africa and therefore thanked donors.
He urged athletes to make best use of the equipment ahead of the Africa Para Games to be hosted by Ghana later this year to ensure they win medals for The Gambia.
He also called more support and the construction of a gym for Para Power lifters to boost their numbers and interest in the sport.
Dillian Richardson in his remarks on behalf of International Paralympics Committee, pointed out that The Gambia has good athletes and it was therefore easy to choose to donate to the country.
He added that they hope the equipment will help Gambian Para sport athletes towards their qualification for the next Paralympics Games. He also expressed hope in seeing more Gambian Para athletes qualify for international competitions.
Sulayman Colley, President of The Gambia National Paralympics Committee, thanked everyone who has over the years contributed to the development of Gambian Para sports.
Mr. Colley said the equipment would be put into good use to boost the strength of Para Powerlifting athletes in the country.
Zhou Ningyu, Political Counsellor and Deputy Head of Mission for the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in The Gambia, said the role of para sports in promoting the wellbeing of Persons With Disabilities cannot be over emphasised.
He expressed his government’s commitment to continue its collaboration with The Gambia on areas of interest including sports.
Marcel Mendy, Executive Director of the National Sports Council, who deputised for the Minister of Youth and Sports, said with the equipment they are confident athletes would be encouraged to train and do better for the country in international competitions.
According to him, they have always endeavoured to support Para sports and will continue to do so.
He stated that “what is provided for others should equally be provided for Persons With Disabilities because they are human like anyone.”