SPORT MINISTER PROUD OF GAMBIA’S OLYMPIC ATHLETES
Tuesday, August 07, 2012
The Gambian minister of Youth and Sports Alieu Kebba Jammeh has hailed the performance of the country’s two athletes that participated at the 2012 summer Olympic Games in London.
Sprinter Suwaibou Sanneh break his own national and personal records in two consecutive days at the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, London but missed out in a place in the finals of the 100 meters event which was again won by Jamaican world championship, Usain Bolt in an Olympic record timing of 9.63 seconds.
Suwaibou coming into the Olympics break the long standing Gambian record in that category held by Jaysuma Saidy Ndure who now competes for Norway –Ndure was beat on the track by Suwaibou- with a timing of 10.22 seconds but ran 10.21 in the first round of the 100 meters on Saturday to qualify to the semifinals. The Jarra Soma born athlete again breaks that record in the semis on Sunday with a timing of 10.18 seconds but missed out in the finals having finished joint seventh in the first semifinals.
Suwaibou’s compatriot Saruba Colley also negotiated her way past the 100 meters preliminaries in the women’s event finishing second in her event to qualify to the first round and even though she too break a national record of 12.06 seconds missed out in the semifinals.
But speaking to Observer Sports on the line from Banjul, the honourable minister of Youth and Sports Alieu K Jammeh hailed the performance of the two athletes especially Suwaibou Sanneh and promised that a good surprise awaits the duo in Banjul upon their return on August 14th.
His words: “Exhilarating speed and results, keep your head high up Suwaibou. Gambia and Africa is proud of you. Being an African champion is definitely within reach and the world will be there to grab” the minister spoke so highly of the Gambian. “To run with that world renown athletes and break another national record of just 10 seconds is quite an achievement for him and the Gambia should be proud of him and Saruba too because they deserved it” he added.
When Suwaibou stepped on the athletic track, he was introduced in the PC System as Gambia’s national record holder and the 80,000 spectators followed that up with a huge round of applause for our compatriot and speaking further, Minister Jammeh said his ministry will give the athletes the necessary support that they need to continue to the higher heights.
Learn from Senegal
Earlier, Minister Jammeh expressed hope that The Gambia will learn from the achievements of neighbouring Senegal at the football event of the 2012 London Olympics.
During a separate last week with the Daily Observer and West Coast Radio when he visited the Gambian athletes at the Olympic Village in Strafford before his departure from the UK to The Gambia, Minister Jammeh, who was among the various dignitaries at the Royal Box at Wembley Stadium where Senegal defeated Uruguay 2-0 in a group game said his main reason for watching that game was to see how The Gambia can learn from the Senegalese by going to the grassroots. He expressed hope that The Gambia will in the near future be able to boast of several football stars in the world’s renowned leagues.
The Sport Minister, who also attended the Commonwealth Sports Ministers meeting in London and other meetings also renewed his call for equity of support to the various sporting associations. He said his Ministry will help by rendering support to the other sporting associations in their efforts to revive those fading sports.
Speaking further, the honourable Minister, who revealed that he used to play Badminton in school, said he is hoping that the sport will soon be introduced in the country.
Author: Baboucarr Camara in London