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South Sudan Bags Three Silvers in the East African Schools Tournament - Sep 9, 2011

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Juba The Republic of South Sudan bagged three silver medals - one in basketball and two in athletics - at the East African Secondary Schools Association Games which closed over the weekend in Mbarara, Uganda.

In an exclusive interview with GOSS.ORG reporter the Deputy Director of Co-Curricular Activities in the Ministry of General Education and Instruction Mr Charles Sokivi Thomas lauded the performance taking into account that South Sudan is the youngest country in the bloc and has several challenges in sports.

Bentiu Secondary School won a silver medal in boys' basketball and the other two in athletics.

Mr Sokivi explained that South Sudan, which is a member of the association, has been participating in the games since 2008. He said that each member must present at least four teams, both boys and girls, in the games to qualify as a member. He reported that South Sudan has met this threshold. Furthermore, he explained, that 2011 was the first time South Sudan presented a girls' football team a development which he described as progressive.

He explained that South Sudan's performance at the games has been improving since 2008. He said that it is the recognition of this improvement that South Sudan's basketball team was selected to represent the federation in the inter-continental games in Ohio, USA held last month. He regretted, however, that the team could not travel owing to the Khartoum government's reluctance to issue its members with the necessary travel documents.

Mr Sokivi explained that South Sudan would perform better if the various challenges school sports in the country faces were addressed. He cited lack of qualified coaches, inadequate sporting programmes, and inconsistency in training and practice as some of the challenges that schools face regarding sports. He emphasized the need to train sports trainers.

He also suggested that every school should have a sports teacher, current sports teachers and coaches should get access to refresher courses to update their skills, talent search scheme to identify and nurture youth talented in sports should be developed, executives in the central and state governments should support sports in their respective schools, awareness of the value of sports to the country and individuals should be created, and sports be mainstreamed in the schools curricula.
Courtesy of: Government of South Sudan (Juba)

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