Asmara — The Eritrean commissioner of Sport, His Excellency Mr. Zemede Tekle wrote the International Olympic Committee to ask the Olympic body to give due consideration to the introduction of the traditional Eritrean games of Gebeta and Handay at the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
In an exclusive interview with our sister TV station, Eri-TV, Commissioner Zemede revealed that he wrote a personal note to His Excellency Mr. Thomas Bach, Member and President of the International Olympic Committee, where he implored the leader to consider introducing the games as those Eritrean games have firm foundation in history, and are, according to him, probably “more historical than the games from Greece”.
Mr. Zemede, who elaborated that some of the games such as fencing, ice skating , or water polo by design seem to be the domains of, according to him, “white people”, underlined that should the Olympic committee heed the advice of the Eritrean Government, the upcoming event in Japan would be colorful and well-rounded.
“We’ve had enough of the Western Countries hauling all the gold in the olympics by partaking in painfully pointless sports such as Water Polo, Ice Skating , Artistic Gymnastics and Fencing. And I believe I speak on behalf of all other African nations that the games should include traditional games from Africa.” The Commissioner TOLD ERI-TV.
Mr. Zemede also underlined that the introduction of the traditional games would spare some shameless African nations the prospect of having to partake in events they have no “understanding or know-how” about.
” We wish to avoid the tragic sight of an Ethiopian Athlete almost drowning,” the Commissioner wrote.
Despite the Olympics being touted as ‘international’ , African nations have only been represented in limited events, mostly in track and field. Moreover, no country in Africa has ever hosted the summer or winter games.
The International Olympic Committee is yet to comment on the contents of the letter it received from the Eritrean Commission of Sports.