The Ethiopian Olympic Committee (EOC) announced it has put its regular preparations for the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics on hiatus. The 2020 games was postponed by one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Wednesday, March 25, 2020, the EOC said its decision comes after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced it has postponed the summer Olympics.
It is to be recalled that the EOC ordered the Ethiopian national team to settle in a hotel until further notice. However, the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF) officially declined the call and ordered athletes to stay home instead. The lone Ethiopian International taekwondo representative Solomon Tufa was the only athlete to have settled in a hotel. However, following the postponement, he has also returned home.
The EOC has confirmed it will conduct a video conference with the IOC president Thomas Bach over the next steps to be taken.
The IOC President, Thomas Bach, and the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, held a press conference to discuss the constantly changing environment with regards to COVID-19 and the fate of the upcoming 2020 Olympic. According to their statements, in the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO, both leaders concluded the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a later date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safe guard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.
Meanwhile, the leaders have agreed “The Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flames could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which we find ourselves at the present.”
In addition, they have come to a decision that the Olympic torch will stay in Japan and the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.
Sport personalities donate money, medical equipment
Athletes and teams around the world are contributing equipment’s and donating money to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. After the Ethiopian Premier League (EPL) postponed its games, various football clubs have donated medical equipment’s to hospitals.
St. George has donated more than half a million IV fluids to Addis Ababa City Administration.
In addition, the Ethiopian Athletics Federation president, Deraratu Tulu donated 200,000 birr to the Ministry of Health. Minister Liya Tadesee (MD) said, “It is a pleasure for us that the Ethiopian Athletics Federation stands with us.”
Elsewhere, various EPL clubs have been engaged with their communities, carrying out there social responsibilities.
According to WHO, more than 530,000 COVID-19 cases have been registered, more than 24,000 have died and more than 124,000 have recovered. The pandemic is affecting more than 199 countries and territories around the world. Ethiopia has 12 confirmed cases so far.