The 18th Edition of the University Games kicks off in Yaoundé I

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Official Opening ceremony: The 18th Edition of the University Games kicks off in Yaoundé I

By 10.15 am, the highly elevated and cherished University games saw the dawn of a new day, as the Olympic torch was lit at the Yaoundé 1 University complex on the 24th of May 2015. The 18th Edition of the University games, that brings together state, private Universities and higher institutions of learning was graced by the presence of the Minister of Higher Education, the Roving Ambassador, Minister of Youth and Physical Education, Minister of Communication, the Representative of the President of FENASU, the Representative of the Governor, Government Delegate to the Yaoundé City Council, Pro-chancellors, chancellors, Rectors of various institutions, the Mayor of Yaoundé 3, traditional rulers, guests, the media, athletes and participants among others. The occasion that witnessed the presence of over 3000 athletes was animated by a breath taking parade of all contingents from the different institutions. The institutions include: UBa, UB, UDs, UMa, UN,UY I,UY II,INJS, ESTP, ENSPT, UCAC, UdM ,IUG, SIANTU ,NPB ,St JEROME, CUIB, ISEM, UDla. During the colourful occasion an inter-religious prayer session was held for the safety of the athletes during the games.

Minister encourages athletes

The Minister of Higher Education, Prof Jacques Fame NDONGO in his keynote address during the opening ceremony advised athletes to use the games to promote unity, and sportsmanship. The Minister expressed gratitude to the Head of State, and Prime Minister, for their special attention to the University Community and lauded the efforts of other members of government, University management and Yaoundé community for their support and contributions in hosting the 18th edition of the university games. Prof Fame Ndongo admonished participants to inculcate peace, fraternity, solidarity, and team spirit. Thanking the sponsors of the University games and other key officials, the Minister advised participants to imbibe a conscious and cohesive spirit geared towards national Unity. He stated the theme of the games as “Assuring patriotism for territorial growth” and encouraged, endurance and dialogue. The minister hammered on the fact that athletes should shun the use of drugs, or any form of forgery during the games and used the opportunity to praise two key outstanding athletes who participated during the 7th edition of the African Federation games.

Rector of the University of Yaoundé 1 welcomes various delegations

The Rector of the University of Yaoundé 1, Prof Maurice Aurélien Soso in his welcome speech, thanked all participants for making it to the University games. He expressed gratitude to the Ministry of Finance and Higher Education, organizing committee, University Community and close collaborators alongside the students, for their immeasurable support in hosting the event. He admonished the participants to use the games to foster togetherness, positive thinking, and the Olympic spirit assuring all participants of a hitch free competition.

Official Sponsors pledge their support

MTN, one of the official sponsors of the 18th edition of the University games pledged to support the youths towards attaining developmental values. This will be done by setting up a digital village which will offer the opportunity to experience the new digital world, mobile education, free wifi, campus parties to celebrate the performance of athletes, all aimed at imbibing teamwork and fair play. The Representative of the Government delegate, Mr Mbarga Dieudonné in his welcome speech described Yaoundé as a cosmopolitan city and assured participants of an ambiance filled event during the games. He enjoined all to fight against the territorial menace.

Competition set to kick off

The Olympic torch brought all the way from Douala, (the last host of the All University games) was received at the Yaounde1 University complex, by the Rector of the University of Yaoundé 1 and lit by the legendary football icon Albert Roger Milla. This was followed by the presentation of the University games hymn from the University of Yaoundé 1 choir and later a short oath taking procedure by athletes and coaches. The various contingents and their fan clubs made their entrance with a sublime parade which was concluded with the emphatic football kick off between the University of Yaoundé 1 and UCAC .The games slated from the 24th to 31st May 2015 presents a platform for talent hunt, development of culture and collective work, and imbibing the Olympic spirit. This edition introduces the female category of fight as an added discipline and its obvious that the judges and referees would inculcate the spirit of objectivism to promote sporting excellence. /GC

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