To ensure that Namibia’s athletes are adequately prepared and perform well at this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC) has allocated N$250 000 per athlete as preparatory grants towards the 10 able-bodied athletes that have qualified for the 2016 Games.
According to NNOC president Abner Xoagub, the government through the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Services, this year allocated N$2.8 million towards the preparation of athletes, pre-qualification events and also to assist athletes with needed materials ahead of Rio 2016.
“Government gave us N$2.8 million to help prepare athletes for the games. So, we have allocated N$250 000 per athlete towards the 10 able-bodied athletes that have so far qualified for the Olympics. The aim is to help prepare athletes better and to also provide them with adequate platforms where they can prepare better ahead of the games in Brazil,” said Xoagub.
So far, Namibia has 10 able-bodied athletes that have qualified. They are: Helalia Johannes, Beata Naigambo, Alina Armas, Ndeshimona Ekandjo, Mynhardt Kauanivi (all marathon runners), Jonas Junias and Mathias Hamunyela (both boxers), Dan Craven, Vera Adrien and Michelle Vorster (all cyclists) as well as Gaby Ahrens who is a shottist.
A total of 14 athletes with disabilities will represent Namibia at this year’s Paralympics, also in Brazil. They are: Johanna Benson, Rosa Mandjoro, Lahja Ishitile, Albertina Johannes, Johanna Katjikuru, Eino Twegathetwa, Tobias Moses, Johannes Nambala, Ndimulunde Elias, Ananias Shikongo, Aloysius Amutenya, Reginald Benade, Etechegaray Nguluwe (all athletics) and Ruben Soroseb (powerlifting).
As for the Namibia Paralympic Committee (NPC), its secretary general, Michael Hamukwaya, also confirmed that they have this year received N$1.3 million in preparatory funds from government to help better prepare the athletes ahead of Rio.
This year’s Olympic Games are scheduled to take place in Rio de Janeiro from August 5 to 21. The Olympics is the leading international sporting event, featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes from around the world. The Games are considered to be the world’s foremost sports competition, with more than 200 nations participating.