Rundu stadium facilities not disability friendly

22 May 2017 14:20pm
WINDHOEK, 22 MAY (NAMPA) – Namibia Paralympic Committee of Namibia (NPCN) Secretary-General Mike Hamukwaya has expressed his disappointment with the facilities at the Rundu Sport Stadium, noting that they are not user friendly for disabled athletes.
Hamukwaya visited Rundu over the weekend where he held an athlete’s classification and training session and a day’s regional competition.
Speaking to Nampa on Monday, Hamukwaya said Rundu in Kavango East is one of the regions with the highest numbers of athletes who compete at the NPC national championships, but despite this, the athletes lack the support system that is really needed by athletes with disability.
He added that the Rundu Sport Stadium ground is not wheelchair friendly and blind athletes will also find it hard to compete or train at the ground as the running track is just made of sand.
“I really don’t know how schools even those with able body athletes compete at the Rundu Sport Stadium as the tracks are in really bad shape.
“One of the other problem we have in Rundu is athletes who do not have the support system with regards to coaches since all the coaches we get from Cuba are not even sent to Rundu,” he said.
Despite the lack of infrastructure for athletes with disability in Rundu, Hamukwaya described the one-day event as a success saying the NPCN selected a group of athletes who will start training for field events.
“We spoke to a committee that is representing athletes in Kavango East to start training for field events like shot-put and discuss as that can be trained at any open space.
“We are also working on having athletes from Kavango Region in our national team because we want to have full representation of athletes from all the regions in Namibia,” he said.
Five different sporting codes fall under the NPCN namely; power-lifting, swimming, athletics, wheelchair basketball and Boccia - a precision ball sport similar to bowling, usually played by athletes with more severe physical disabilities.