- POSTED: 13 Sep 2013 12:20
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Myanmar plans to build a new sports university in Naypyidaw. In an exclusive interview with Channel NewsAsia, the country's deputy sports minister revealed that this plan will better utilise the facilities being built for the Southeast Asian Games in December.
NAYPYIDAW: Myanmar plans to build a new sports university in Naypyidaw. In an exclusive interview with Channel NewsAsia, the country's deputy sports minister revealed that this plan will better utilise the facilities being built for the Southeast Asian Games in December.
Myanmar's capital, Naypyidaw, will be the main location where most of the 33 sporting events will take place. The country spent the last two years constructing new sporting venues and the government is keen not to let these venues become white elephants after the SEA Games as they are planning to build a sports university within the SEA Games village.
Thuang Htike, deputy sports minister and vice-president of the Myanmar Olympic Committee, said: "Sport is for the good of the youth. Youth is very important for the country. So our plan to open the sports university is to develop the youth and human resources."
"When they graduate from the sports university, those students going to work at the different ministries as sports officers, some will go to the sports federation, to the development of specific sports programme and some to the sports organisations as sports administrators.
"In every country, like Singapore, Thailand -- they have very young officials involved in the Olympic movement. We have to encourage our young Myanmar students to want to be involved in the Olympic movement, international sports activities. This is our plan for the future."
For now, the plan is to show the international community that Myanmar is capable of hosting the SEA Games after a 44-year hiatus.
Mr Thaung added: "Most of the people are not confident and they are worried about our organisation, the lack of experience after so many years without hosting (the SEA Games). We have to show that we can organise international games in Myanmar."
Myanmar's reputation is certainly on the line as they strive to ensure that everything from the athletes' dormitories to the internet and power supply will be in top condition.
Khin Maung Lwin, joint secretary-general of the Myanmar Olympic Committee, said: "Now we are still going on with our full momentum, up to the final day. We can make it, 100 per cent. We can assure you that we can make it without any problems."
The planners will also be giving 100 per cent dedication to ensuring the safety of the athletes and participants at the games. Mr Thaung said: "Security, (it's) well-organised. So I can say that no problem, no riots, no security problems will be happening during our SEA Games."
Organisers have declined to say how much hosting the games will cost them. However, they are hoping that the opening ceremony, as well as the games, will be nothing short of spectacular.