Seychelles expects to have its first-ever Olympic House once construction is completed on the project, the president of the local Olympic Committee said.
Antonio Gopal, president of the Seychelles Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association, told SNA that the Olympic House project started a year ago and was to be completed in October last year.
“The contractor gave us October as the date for the completion of the project but with the COVID-19 situation, this has not been possible. It is now expected to finish this month but judging from what we’ve seen so far it might be longer, maybe in another month or so,” said Gopal.
Once completed the Olympic House will be the headquarters of the Seychelles Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association (SOCGA).
Gopal said that this is the norm in member countries of the International Olympic Committee whereby each member has its own headquarters.
“In it there will be offices for our staff and other offices that can be used by other federations that might need them for their meetings. We will also have a research centre where will have all of our memorabilia and anything connected with the Olympics,” said Gopal.
The Olympic House is located in the central Mahe district of Roche Caiman between the Stad Linite medical centre and Nature Seychelles headquarters.
The facility once completed will have offices for staff and a large hall. (Rassin Vannier, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY
The facility will also have a large hall that can hold around 60 persons and Gopal said this will be ideal for SOCGA.
“In the past we had to rent places to hold our general assembly. Since it will be an Olympic headquarters, all federations in Seychelles can also use the facility free of charge.”
Gopal said the project has been 10 years in the making as SOCGA had to raise sufficient funds for its construction.
“We got $100,000 from the International Olympic Committee and the Olympic Committee Association. The rest we raised ourselves. Every year we receive $20,000 and we have saved part of that money to build the Olympic House and it has taken us 10 years. The building cost SCR5.4 million ($267,000),” Gopal told SNA.
Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, has been a member of the International Olympic Committee since 1979.
The island nation has participated in the Olympic Games since 1980, missing only the 1988 edition. The nation has not yet won an Olympic medal.
Two Seychellois athletes, sailor Rodney Govinden and swimmer Felicity Passon, have qualified for the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.
In the last Olympic Games in 2016, Seychelles had 10 athletes participating in six events: athletics, boxing, judo, swimming, sailing and weightlifting.