The teams at the centre of pullout storm controversy, are, Novo Nordisk of the United States of America (USA), Loup Sport of Switzerland and Scody Downunder of Australia.
Rwanda Cycling Federation (Ferwacy) president Aimable Bayingana confirmed the report and cried foul over the latest development in news reports published Thursday by the online Rwandan media.
Bayingana described the teams’ reason to pull out of Tour du Rwanda as ‘ridiculous and shameful’ arguing the country had not yet registered any Ebola case and there was no reason for an alarm.
Like elsewhere on the globe, Rwanda is in the proximity to DR Congo where the Ebola Virus is reported to have originated has also stepped up efforts to keep the epidemic at bay through screening of all people entering the country.
Nonetheless, Bayingana was comforted by the fact that soon after the trio had opted to walk out of the race, three new contenders immediately threw their hats into the ring.
The race received further boost, following reports that all top African International Cycling Union (UCI) teams will be available for the race including Morocco.
Ironically, Morocco has just pulled out from hosting Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) soccer tournament which is scheduled to be held from 17 January to 8 February due to the same Ebola issue.
“However, this is not an issue because as soon as they pulled out, other teams requested to compete in the tour because they know the significance of the event.
Infact, the top UCI [International Cycling union] teams in Africa will be here, including Algeria, Morocco and South Africa,” he explained.
The teams that have replaced those that have opted out of the race are, Meubles Decarte of Switzerland, AS BECO of Eritrea and SNH Velo of Cameroon.
The weeklong cycling race was scheduled to start on Sunday this week and will attract 15 teams from various parts of the globe.
It has been learnt that organisers of the event had initially planned to invite 20 teams for the event but failed to meet the targeted figure due to financial constraints.
According to the online media reports, Tour Du Rwanda is one of the most competitive races on the African continent and is listed as 2.2 by the International Cycling Union (UCI).