Guinea’s Sports Minister Sanoussy Bantama Sow announced on Wednesday that his country will not participate in the Tokyo Olympics. According to him, the government wants to “preserve the health of athletes” in the face of “the upsurge in variants of Covid-19”.
For the first time since 1976, there will be no Guinean athlete at the Summer Olympics. Mamadou Bah (swimming), Mamadou Samba Bah (judo), Fatoumata Yarie Camara (wrestling), Aïssata Denn Conte (athletics) and Mariama Touré (swimming), the five athletes who would represent the country in Tokyo from July 23 to August 8, will do not go to Japan. Guinea has formalized its package for the 32nd edition of the Olympics on Wednesday, July 21.
The Minister of Sports sent a letter to the President of the Guinea Olympic Committee announcing that the country had participated in Tokyo 2021. Covid-19 pandemic. In view of the current health situation in Japan, the Guinean government wants to “preserve the health of Guinean athletes”.
Thus ”due to the re – emergence of Covid-19 variants“The authorities decided” with regret that Guinea’s participation was suspended “in the Tokyo Games, writes Sanoussy Bantama Sow.
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Financial problems are also mentioned
Another unofficial reason may also explain this resignation. An anonymous source close to the government told AFP that economic problems forced the country to withdraw: “The file is overcharged, that is why the ministry can not pay.” The Guinean press caused problems with unpaid premiums.
Guinea is the second country to announce that it will not participate in the Tokyo Olympics due to Covid-19. April 6 North Korea had also decided not to send athletes to Japan to “protect them from the global health crisis”.
Fatoumata Yarie Camara appeals to the President of the Republic
Wrestler Fatoumata Yarie Camara did not hide his concern over this decision. “I am just sorry to hear that. I do not know what to think today, right now T or what to say. I prepared these games for four years in Morocco. I dreamed about it, it was one of my dreams to participate in the Olympic Games, to be officially qualified, to participate in these games, “she confided.
The athlete accuses the fight: “I sacrificed myself for my country to qualify for the Olympics. I officially qualified, I’m the only one qualified for the Olympics (in its discipline, the editor’s remark) and I’m learning today that I can not participate because of the coronavirus. I want the President of the Republic to review his decision for me, because I really want to take part in these Olympic Games. It’s so important to me. ”
Fatoumata Yarie Camara also mentioned recurring problems with the Guinean sports authorities. “I had the medal at the African Games, I had the medal at the Francophonie Games. I also had a medal at the world championships. I qualified for the Olympics and so far I have not received the reward for my medals or the bonuses for my medals. (…) Every time it is so. They say they will give me, they will reward me, but in the end I get nothing. “