The National, Wednesday 01st Febuary 2012
By ELIZABETH VUVU
THE Host Organising Committee (HOC) of the 5th PNG Games in East New Britain has a mammoth task of completing preparatory works leading up to the event in November.
The HOC has already lost two years to prepare due to the slowness of bureaucracy to release the required funds.
This has forced the HOC to make a very difficult decision to proceed with hosting the games within a strict timeline.
During its meeting on Jan 18, it was confirmed ENB would still proceed to host the games on Nov 19-30.
The HOC also approved a submission for the rollout of the required works at the Kokopo sports ground and selected sporting facilities in the districts that will host certain codes.
HOC deputy chairman, James Wong said the decision was finally made after the National Gaming Control Board (NGCB) released on the Jan 11 the first K10 million.
On behalf of the HOC Wong extended their appreciation to the NGCB on their financial support.
He thanked ENB governor Leo Dion and members of the HOC for the support in securing the funds.
“It will indeed be a huge challenge for ENB to implement all the necessary preparatory work within an already tight timeline and we will need the support of all stakeholders in the process of implementation of activities leading up to the actual games.”
An approved list has been refined to confirm what sporting codes to be played at what avenue with 24 different sporting codes approved.
However due to lack of facilities, swimming was dropped while cricket, canoeing and lawn bowling were still being considered.
Wong said they were encouraged by the willingness of the private sector who have assisted to the HOC in offering to host certain sports and preparation of certain venues – at no cost.
“A major component of the works will focus on the Kokopo-Takubar sports ground which will be used for the official opening and closing ceremonies as well as for athletics.”
He said they were confident of completing all preparatory works on time and the objective was to bring the games closer to the people.