By Trevor Makonyonga
The Zimbabwe Olympic Committee (ZOC) has announced the members of the delegation travelling to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The delegation comprises of five athletes, five coaches and eight officials from the government, ZOC and medical personnel for the athletes.
The athletes include; Katai Donata Andra Sofia (Swimming), Makusha Ngoni Methukhela (Athletics), Purcell-Gilpin Peter Sean Richard (Rowing), Vincent Scott Nicholas (Golf) and Wetzlar Peter Charles (Swimming).
The coaches and technical personnel going with the athletes are Chivonivoni Mufaro Joy (Golf Coach/Team Leader), Lisimati Phakhamile Edward (Athletics Coach), Stephenson James Alexander (Rowing Coach), Tudor-Cole Lindsy (Swimming Coach), Vincent Kelsey Anne (Golf Caddy), Ndlovu Fredreck (Chef De Mission-Head of Delegation), Mnikwa Abigail (Physiotherapist & Covid Liaison Officer) and Pakati Memory (General Team Management & Deputy Covid Liaison Officer).
The country delegation comprises of, Mlotshwa Gerald N (Chairman Sports and Recreation Commission), Hon Mathias Tongofa (Chairman of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation), Kadzirange Tariro (PA to the Honourable Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation), Thabani Gonye (President Zimbabwe National Olympic Committee) and Stephen Mudawarima (Secretary General and CEO Zimbabwe Olympic Committee).
According to ZOC, the government delegation is travelling under the National Olympic Committee Transferable Guests Accreditation.
“The IOC approved accreditation guidelines allow NOCs to invite Key Stakeholders to the games. Transferable means they will all not be there at the same time but one after the other. The Invited Guests are the Chairman of the SRC and the Chairman of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation. These are key positions which have a serious bearing on the trajectory of our sport. The Olympic games provide the biggest opportunity and exposure to observe best practise and world class standards.”
ZOC explained the inclusion of other delegates to the games who are under the government delegation.
“Team Zimbabwe in its travelling entourage to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games has included in its delegation the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio on Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Committee, Honourable Tongofa. The inclusion of the Portfolio Committee Chairperson stemmed from the realization of the need to expose our legislative support systems to high performance sport and its standard requirements which have been perennially underestimated in terms of budgetary support. It also emanates from the need for experiential learning by way of participation for informed guidance and legislative support of sport development and promotion. The SRC mandate includes the promotion of the highest standards of sportsmanship and to advise the Government of the needs of sport and recreation. In hope of a shift in the overall support of National Sport Associations as well as transformation of the sector into a viable industry, the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee has accredited the Chairperson of the Sports and Recreation Commission as part of the NOC guests to represent the Country in Tokyo. The deliberate inclusion of the SRC Chair to the world’s biggest multi-sport event takes into cognizance that the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Exposure will be a meeting place of more than 200 National Olympic Committees as well as 33 different International Federations. The travelling party would therefore like to stimulate sports development through emulation of the experiences and interactions provided in the games programme and beyond. The Government delegation also provides the direct link with our Embassy in Tokyo as they perform their diplomacy and political functions.”
The NOC President and Secretary General for ALL NOC’s under the IOC attend the Olympic Games as the NOC delegation notwithstanding athlete participation at the games and are thus not included in the overall team computations.