The 9th Francophonie Games, which took place in Kinshasa, came to a close on Sunday, August 6, after ten days of intense sports and cultural activities that captivated the people of Kinshasa.
On this final day, the Martyrs Stadium in Kinshasa was packed with people. As many were inside as outside this well-prepared venue for this internationally acclaimed event. Just like at the opening, it was the Head of State, Felix Tshisekedi, the main driving force behind this competition, who officially closed the games with words of gratitude for the participants and organizers.
“These games will be etched in the collective memory of the Congolese and in the annals of the Francophonie as a historic event,” stated the President of the Republic amidst ovations from an enthusiastic crowd. He added that the Democratic Republic of Congo will “capitalize on this success and the infrastructure left by these games to bring about qualitative changes and establish mechanisms that will enable Congolese youth to dream big and take advantage of all opportunities to realize their potential, particularly in the fields of sports, arts and education.”
Even before his closing address, the highest authority in the country awarded medals to the winners and officials of the football competition, which was won by Cameroon (gold medal) after a 1-0 victory over Burkina Faso (silver medal) in the final. Niger took third place (bronze medal).
Musician Ferré Gola, the main attraction of the closing ceremony, performed for a few minutes in playback before his grand show at the Palace of the People as part of the Francophonie nights. These 9th Francophone Olympiads, both sports and cultural, went smoothly without any major incidents and experienced an unprecedented inflow. Undoubtedly, one of the best moments that the Congolese people in general, and the people of Kinshasa in particular, have experienced in decades.
Hence, the recognition of the Minister of Sports, François Kabulo Mwana Kabulo, who, in his speech, did not fail to salute the tenacity of the national executive and his encouragement to stay on course and fulfill commitments. It is worth noting that the 9th edition of the Francophonie Games saw the participation of thirty-seven delegations and nearly two thousand competitors aged 18 to 35.
At the end of all the events, Morocco topped the rankings with a total of fifty-eight medals, including twenty-three gold, sixteen silver, and nineteen bronze. The Democratic Republic of Congo, the host country, won thirty-four medals (five gold, eleven silver, and eighteen bronze).