WELCOME MESSAGE BY THE MINISTER RESPONSIBLE FOR EAST AFRICAN COMMUNITY AFFAIRS ON THE OCCASION OF THE FIRST EDIDTION OF THE EAST AFRICAN COMMUNITY GAMES
I am very delighted to welcome you all to the first Edition of the East African Community Games to be from 16th to 30th August, 2018 in Bujumbura city and in the towns of Gitega and Ngozi, under the theme: Fostering East African Community Integration and Peace through Sports.
The Republic of Burundi is honored to host this very first Edition of the East African Community Games. We welcome the sportsmen and sportswomen of region as they engage in this initiative to foster integration and peace, as one people with one destiny. Sport is good for everyone regardless its age. Let us use this opportunity to interact, know each other and strengthen peace among the people in our region and consolidate unity and cohesion that the people enjoy and strive to maintain.
It is my sincere hope that these Games will develop, promote, deepen and widen the integration process within the East African Community.
Sports, in all its different forms, is an essential part of human activity and, as such, constitutes an increasingly important part of social development, as well as being a contributor to peace building and economic growth.
It is gratifying to note that sport is increasingly recognized as a major factor in the rapid economic, social, political, cultural and educational expansion of our countries. The establishment of Ministries or Departments responsible for Sports in our respective governments is an indicator of its significance. More importantly, sports is used as a tool in the promotion of peace, social cohesion and international relations.
It is worth recalling that when young people participate in sports or have access to physical education, they can build up their health and self-esteem, use their talents to the fullest, learn the ideals of teamwork and tolerance.
I would also like to reiterate the commitment of the Government of the Republic of Burundi in promoting a prosperous, competitive, stable and politically united East African Community.
I welcome you all to the Republic of Burundi. I hope you will also find time to visits the different attractions in Burundi and that you will enjoy our warm hospitality.
Thank you very much.