Concerns over healthcare, water, venues: Ballu raises Games issues.

Ajay Ballu. Picture: File

TEAM Fiji’s chef de mission Ajay Ballu says healthcare, water access and quality, and whether venues will be ready are among issues raised with organisers of the 2023 Pacific Games in Honiara, Solomon Islands.

Ballu and Team Fiji administrator Jane Niubalavu were in the games host nation last week to attend the chef de missions meeting with members of the SOL2023 Games Organising Committee.

The Games are scheduled to begin on November 24 and end on December 2 next year.

“The major concerns are water, showers and toilets, money exchange, use of credit cards, rubbish, ice, laundromat, transport, food, internet connectivity, and healthcare to name a few,” Ballu said.

“We also shared our concerns on whether all the venues and the infrastructure would be ready in time for the Games and so we have asked the Games Organising Committee if we can make another trip to confirm that everything that has been promised is in place before the Games begin.

“The SOL2023 Games Organising Committee were great hosts during the CdM meeting in Honiara and we came home with a lot of information for our NOC and the sports who will be attending the Games.”

He said the information they returned with included the Games Village that Team Fiji would be billeted at and facilities such as sports venues and training areas.

“We were expecting that most of the infrastructure would be 50 per cent-75 per cent completed, however, there is still a lot of work to do and that is why the idea to visit Honiara again in 2023 is to have a real picture of what progress has been made,” Ballu said.

“On paper everything looks good, world class facilities and venues, however, the delivery of the Games will be something to be seen.”

This will be the first time the Solomon Islands will host the Pacific Games.

It is expected that 24 countries and territories who are members of the Pacific Games Association will participate in the 2023 Pacific Games including New Zealand and Australia.

As amended in the Pacific Games Charter in 2019, the program of the Pacific Games shall consist of a maximum 24 sports.

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