By: Mahmoud Qodah

Hargeisa (Somaliland Monitor) – Officials from the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Tourism have on Thursday announced that Somaliland’s regional sports tournament mainly (football, basketball and athletics) will officially commence on 27 October, 2016 in Hargeisa, Somaliland’s capital city.

This tournament has already been scheduled to take place on February, but latter delayed due to a widespread drought – one of the worst ever, according to humanitarian and government agencies – which mainly hit western regions of the country.

Minister of Youth, Sports and Tourism Mr. Abdilahi Farah Ahmed (Maydhane) who has been flanked by his deputy Minister, director general and the heads of national sports federations (Football, basketball and Athletics) officially announced the kick off the country’s biggest sports events which is the regional sports tournament on October 27, 2016. This tournament is held in Somaliland once every year and is jointly organized by the national sports federations and the ministry of youth and sports which is the main donor of this tournament.

“After taking into a consideration that currently there are no fears or the existence of any droughts in the country and similarly that the tasks of voter registration cards are almost complete; and after I have received well-justified recommendations and suggestions from the preparatory committee and national sports federations; eventually I have decided to officially announce that the regional tournament is scheduled to commence on October 27, 2016 in Hargeisa.”

“This Sports tournament which football, basketball and athletics players is planned to take part will be commenced on 27 October of this year. We have already conducted the first phase of the tournament which has been a qualification of 14 football regional teams. Now 8 football, and basketball regional teams will be attending this 5th regional tournaments on October 27 in Hargeisa,“ said Director of Youth, Sports and Tourism Ministry Mohamed Hussein Dhabeye.

The Director likewise sent a warning message to all Somaliland politicians both (government and opposition) not to politicize regional sports tournament as he reminds them that sports fosters social integration and as such politics has no place in sports.

  • 8 Football regional teams will take part in the tournament and are as follows: SOOL region, SANAAG region, Haysimo region, Daad-madhedh regoin, Awdal region, Gabiley region, Hawd region and SAHIL region.
  • 8 Basketball regional teams will also take part in the tournament and are as follows: Hargeisa region, SANAAG region, Gabiley region, Daad-madhedh regoin, Awdal region, Tog-dheer region, Hawd region and SAHIL region.
  • All country’s 14 regions will take part in the games of Athletics.

Minister of Youth, Sports and Tourism has similarly nominated the following officials as tournament’s official preparatory committee:

  1. Mohamed Hussein Ahmed– Director General of Ministry– Chairperson.
  2. Mohamed Nuh Jibriil – Ministry’s Director for Sports – Vice-Chairperson
  3. Abdirashid Aydid Yasen– Ministry’s Director for Planning – Secretary
  4. Mahmoud Hassan Abdilahi (Qodah) – Chairman of Basketball Federation – Member
  5. Mohamed Abdi Elmi – Chairman for Football Federation – Member
  6. Abdiasis Mohamed Jama -Deputy Chairman of Football Federation – Member
  7. Mustafe Ali Nour – Chairman of Athletic Federation – Member
  8. Omer Ali Abdi– Director for Youth – Member
  9. Abdikarim Farah Hassan – Director for Finance and Admin – member
  10. Ibrahim Mohamed Deriye – Director for Tourism – Member and;
  11. Rashed Osman Mohamed – Consultant of the Minister—Member.
Mohamoud Qodah is the Co-editor-in-chief of Somaliland Monitor. He also serves as the assistant editor of the Republican English weekly newspaper published by Jamhuuriya media Group.

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