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Dawie Augustyn, head of mission from the Namibia National Olympic Committee, says the preparations for the country’s athletes are well underway for the mid-year spectacle in Japan.

Augustyn expressed that all systems are a go, with no notion of the games being cancelled.

“Most of our qualified athletes are preparing outside of Namibia. Those that are based locally, have been in their preparations during this time.”

According to Augustyn, track athletes, swimmers and marathon athletes still have an opportunity to make the cut.

“We still have karate athletes and cyclists that will have their last qualifying rounds in June,” he said.

In regard to Covid-19 preparations for the possible team that Namibia will send to the Olympics, Augustyn says that there is a playbook that is sent to all members who will participate in the spectacle in July.

“The International Olympic Committee has forwarded this playbook to all the participating countries. We have to follow this by the letter due to the safety protocols that both the local organising committee and the IOC have been trying to ensure,”

He said that athletes used to have extra time under normal circumstances to travel around the host city.

“This change now, whereby this has been prevented according to the playbook. Once you’re done, you then have very little time for sightseeing.”

Meanwhile, Japan has major backlash from locals about the event taking place. Various polls have indicated that Japanese feel that this event should either be cancelled or postponed again.

The prime minister of Japan has been accused of pushing for the Olympics to go ahead. He however denied this. The Tokyo Olympics was meant to happen last year, but with the breakout of the global pandemic, a decision was taken to postpone the event to 2021 which comes every four years.

The start date is meant to run from 21 July up to 8 August.

Various international athletes have indicated their hesitancy towards the games taking place.


Julia Heita

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