NOC-SLE Cautions Associations

The President of the National Olympic Committee of Sierra Leone (NOC-SLE), Dr Patrick Coker, has cautioned various sporting Associations, that want to return to training, to be very mindful that COVID-19 is still around, and that they should do testing with NACOVERC before they resume training.
Making his statement, during a meeting with the different sporting Associations, on Wednesday October 14th 2020 at the NOC-SLE’s head office at Howe Street, Dr Coker said he knows that everyone wants to go back to training and, one of the things they want to talk about is the return to the games, because, after the last webinar that he organized, he found out that it was the most talked about now. “It’s not too easy to say we want to play, for example, in Morocco, where it’s open that any Association, that wants to return to training, must make sure that the athletes face isolation for three days, and also get tested before they can participate in any training session, which I believe will not be that easy for us here,” he said.
He said they appealed to the Associations of National Olympic Committees in Africa (ANOCA) to assist them with COVID-19 relief funds in order to reopen their offices and also for the various Associations to return back to training, of which they decided to send money to them for the different Associations.
The Chairman of the Commonwealth Games also revealed that he has been appointed as Chairman of the Medical Commission for Africa by the ANOCA President, because they find out that, for quite a long time, nothing medical has been done in Africa and that he will be working with a five man Committee, including a woman.
Dr Coker also talked about the importance of the Anti-doping E-Learning, which he hopes that senior coaches from the different Associations will possibly register to take part, especially those that will participate in next year Islamic Games, Olympic Games, if possible, the Commonwealth Games. It will be for those Associations that will participate to send a representative to do the training.
He also stated that all Associations, which want to do the COVID-19 test, must consult the NOC and that they will make arrangements with NACOVERC to do the test.
In his speech, NOC’s Secretary General, Joseph Nyande, said the situation surrounding the COVID-19 is very critical taking into consideration some people can have the virus without any sign or symptoms. “We might not even know that they are infected,” Joseph Nyande informed.
He went further to state that it’s very important that they have an anti-doping by ANOCA. They have the Medical and Anti-doping Commission, which is responsible for updating Olympic Anti-doping education and medical education.
“We’ve been making strides, little by little, to get there. We and the Ministry of Sports initially have set up the Anti-doping Organization, wherein we have members from the different sets and we are trying to work on that. We are expecting experts to come here and educate our athletes, coaches and also the officials in the area of anti-doping. It’s unfortunate because of COVID-19 we are unable to do that. And I am a member of the Board of Eastern Africa,” he stated.
He also disclosed that they are presently trying to do the rules and regulation for Sierra Leone; and that it is the responsibility of each and every Association and sporting organization to be able to monitor their athletes and coaches. So what they have done is for all Associations to be able do the Anti-doping ELearning system, which, by 2021, will be recommended for all.
Giving the update on the Olympic Games, the Chef De Mission of Sierra Leone, Unisa Deen Kargbo (UDK), said they have received assurance that the Olympic Games will go on as planned, and that revelation came after a webinar few days back. The organizers have assessed the COVID-19 situation. He again said that, as part of the new changes, the number of delegations will be reduced. There is a mandatory two weeks’ quarantine, wherein tests will be done at home ‘and when you go to Japan.’
“Before taking any delegation to Tokyo you should have quarantined them, do proper testing and they’re proved to be negative. After you finish participating you should leave Tokyo. Also there will be no team welcome ceremony; they will only invite the Chef De Mission to exchange gifts and also the system of registration will open early and will be closed earlier than it was. Within November to January, we are expecting all Associations to have registered their delegation,” the Chef De Mission said.
UDK further stated that they are very concerned on how to go back to training. According to him, he knows everybody wants to go to training but they should not just take the athletes to training without doing proper testing.
He also revealed that, this time around, the Chef De Mission have to sign a mandatory for every athlete that will be in the system to be at the Olympic Games.

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