Friday, 7 May 2010

Kenya to send 250 athletes to CWG

Kenya will send a team of 250 athletes and officials to this year’s Commonwealth Games in Delhi, Indiain spite of the security concerns.

National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Nock) chairman Kipchoge Keino ruled out withdrawing the Kenyan team from the competition saying they are satisfied with the organization efforts to get the situation under control.

This follows terror threats that Delhi remains a possible terror target during the games.

Keino announced several measures including bringing on board Kenyan policemen to boost the security of the team in India.

"We are taking along several police and intelligence officers to Delhi for the Commonwealth Games in October," said Keino.

At the same time, Keino announced the appointment of a Senior Deputy Commissioner of Police Jonathan Koskei, as the games Chief de Mission because of his profession.

"We are not taking anything for granted.

"We have appointed Koskei because he has knowledge and well placed to advise us on issues of security and of course his involvement in sports.

"I believe we will be well secured as a team," said Keino.

Several intelligence and police officers will also be included in the large Kenyan contingent to the games.

Stephen Soi, who will be the games executive officer and a former police officer, said security, starts with individual athletes and they will sensitize them on need to maintain limited movements while in India.

"No one will be allowed to walk out of the athletes’ village alone or without permission.

"We are serious about the security because we do not want the terrorists to win in this war against a noble event," said Keino.

Kenya will send a large contingent of over 250 athletes and officials and Soi confirmed it will be a major challenge to restrict their movement and provide total security to them.

Keino said between six and ten officers will be allowed to accompany the team.

More than 8,000 athletes from 71 nations are due to compete in India.

"But we are having contacts in Delhi.

"From the Kenyan High commission to individual security agents, we have established links with the security officials in India which we will use to advise us on the situation time and again," said Soi.


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