Tanzanian Olympic president wishes Beijing Winter Olympics success

Tanzanian Olympic president wishes Beijing Winter Olympics success

The Tanzania National Olympic Committee has wished China a successful Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games that will kick off on Feb. 4.

"We are looking forward to a successful Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics like the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games," said Gulam Rashid, the President of the Tanzania National Olympic Committee.

Rashid told Xinhua on Monday in his office in Zanzibar that Tanzania fully supported China in hosting the Winter Olympic Games although the east African nation will not participate because it does not have winter games.

"Since the Beijing Summer Olympics 2008 in which Tanzania participated was successful, we are 100 percent confident that the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics will also be successful," said Rashid, 70, a former football player and football coach for the Tanzania national team--Taifa Stars.

Rashid, who has authored a book in Kiswahili entitled: The Best Football Coach, urged countries from across the world to participate in the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022, saying the Olympics played a crucial role in uniting nations of the world.

"Olympic Games enable athletes to meet so many people from different cultures across the world. Almost all countries in the world take part in Olympic Games," said Rashid.

Asked about some politicians, especially in the West, who are calling for boycotting the Beijing Winter Olympics, Rashid said: "We should not entertain politics in sports because this will be a disadvantage to the athletes and countries as well."

He insisted that politics should not be entertained in the Winter Olympic Games or in any other international games.

On the sports relationship between Tanzania and China, Rashid said the two friendly countries have sports cooperation since time immemorial.

"This stadium was built by the Chinese in 1970, and I started playing football in this stadium," said Rashid in reference to the Amani Stadium in Zanzibar that can accommodate 15,000 spectators.

He added that China also assisted Zanzibar in the construction of the Mao Tse Tung Stadium.

"We appreciate the assistance given by the Chinese in sports development. We have good cooperation with the Chinese people and the Chinese government not only in sports, but also in education, health and economy," he said.

Rashid said most African countries are also enjoying good cooperation with China in sports, education, health and economy.

On Jan 22, Tanzania's Zanzibar President Hussein Ali Mwinyi voiced his support for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics via social media, wishing it a great success.

"I am looking forward to the successful convening of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games. The Olympic Games is a sports festival for all mankind, so it shouldn't be politicized, and should stay away from politics," he said.

"It is only via respecting the Olympic spirit and transcending politics that we can finally realize the mission for global unity and the Olympic creed and motto: faster, higher, and stronger," Mwinyi added.

Produced by Xinhua Global Service

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Author: ZANZIBAR, Tanzania

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