Judoka kitted out

03 December 2018 | Sports

The Namibia Judo Federation (NJF) and International Judo Federation (IJF) are hard at work developing the sport in Namibia following the donation of more than 500 judo mats and 250 judo suits to the Cimbebasia, Orban and Mandume primary schools, as well as the Deutsche Höhere Privatschule and the School for the Visually Impaired.

Speaking at the handover, Cornelius Matthyser, a judo coach who facilitated the donation from IJF, said they hope to reach over 3 200 primary school children. “The project starts in January and our aim is to have a primary schools' leagues in the Khomas region. We will then select a team of 50 students in each school to compete against each other.”

If the project is a success they will take it to other regions, with the aim of spreading it across the 14 regions in the near future. Matthyser added that judo helps children develop their concentration levels and enjoy a healthy lifestyle.

His words were echoed by Director of Education for Khomas Region, Gerard Vries. “We selected these schools because they have resources like a hall and storage facilities for such equipment. We are also in talks with the Japanese Judo Federation and government to build a hall and storage facilities at the Havana Primary School.”

He said this envisaged hall would be used as a meeting place, exam venue and also for income-generating activities.

Marketing executive at the Namibia Sports Commission Chalo Chainda, said this is part of the vision of the commission. “Development is a priority for us. When we see this happening, we are very excited as we see it as implementation by the federations who are making sport accessible to the people.”

Judo was first introduced in Namibia by Sensei Kurt Block in the early 1990s. Since then Namibian judoka have regularly participated in the Africa Union Sport Council Region 5 Games (previously known as the Zone VI Championships), South African Open as well as other international championships.

– Nampa

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