The preparations for the African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Maseru 2020 Youth Games are proceeding smoothly.
This, as the upgrading of the Ha Rapokolana access road is currently underway and the repairing of the track at the Setsoto stadium is also nearing completion.
Maqalika Matsepe, the Ministry of Gender and Youth, Sports and Recreation Chief Information Officer, said there is no need for panic, adding that the renovations will be finished on time for the games to kick off in December.
He said the Rapokolana access road from the mountain road is being upgraded in order to allow participants to move easily during the regional youth competition.
Swimming, he said is one of the sporting codes that will be hosted at this high altitude training centre located in the outskirts of Maseru.
â€œBecause only the gravel road will be upgraded, work on that road will begin a few weeks before the event kicks off, to avoid the possible washing away of the road by torrential rains in the event the reconditioning is done too early,â€ Matsepe said.
”There is no need for the public to be worried about the readiness of the facilities at this stage as things are proceeding as planned,” he noted.
He said there are 12 sporting codes, including athletics, boxing, basketball, netball, volleyball, judo, taekwondo, athletics for the virtually impaired persons and swimming in which the youths will be battling it out, adding that while some of the teams to represent Lesotho in each code have started with preparations, there those who will soon go to camp to select national squads.
The AUSC Region 5 Maseru 2020 Youth games should have been staged last year, but were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
A total of 10 countries from the region are expected to compete in the youth tournament and they include Angola, Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Eswatini, South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, along with hosts, Lesotho.
It was reported that Madagascar and Mauritius have also shown interest to be part of the games.
The last youth games were hosted in Botswana in 2019 and the next ones will be held in Malawi next year.