Over 25 participants on Tuesday September 27th kick-started a three days International Swimming Federation (FINA) official’s clinic at the Siaka Steven Stadium presidential lounge in Freetown.
The three days training aims at improving officiating in swimming, develop and increase participation in the sport and according to the President of Sierra Leone Swimming, Diving and Water Polo association, Rev. George Spilsbury-Williams the training is an opportunity for them in continuing the association’s development stride.
Minister of Sports, Ahmed Khanou laid emphasis on the importance of the clinic adding such capacity building is in line with the ministry’s goal to give sports a different face in the country.
“This is a major step by the Swimming association towards capacity building, let me applaud FINA for such consideration,” the Minister said and cautioned the participants: “You all should entreat this clinic with all seriousness because those days are gone when you just spend a week in such training with nothing to show for it.
“At the end you all should ask what have we done and gained from the training. In other countries, people are paying to undertake such training course because it is a reliable instrument towards sports development.”
The course expert who is also a member of the FINA technical swimming committee member, Olugbenga Lawal informed the participants that they will have to cover theory and practical training, and final assessment method which includes examinations before certification.
He said: “The training will be very interactive and everyone will be encouraged to participate because it is not going to be a one-way affair.”
Sierra Leone became the latest FINA member nation to undertake such clinic after a similar one was conducted in Kigali, Rwanda and Banjul, The Gambia in July this year.