Competing nations at the All Africa University Games in Ethiopia have come together to discuss ways to best manage sport on the continent.
A total of 84 participants were in attendance at the one-day event on the Mekelle University campus.
Joining the International University Sports Federation (FISU) was the Federation of Africa University Sports (FASU) and multiple National University Sport Federations (NUSFs).
Titled "Managing sport in changing Africa", the event brought together university Presidents, FASU head Michael Malumbete Ralethe and other senior leaders of the continental association with executive members of FISU, such as first vice-president Leonz Eder.
Participants exchanged best practices in sport event management and governance, and discussed ongoing collaborative projects and partnership programmes.
"With more than 20 National University Sports Federations of Africa present at the FISU-FASU-NUSF seminar in Mekelle this has been a great success; not only because of these impressive numbers, but also because of everyone’s very active participation," Eder said.
"Participants were very interested to learn more about the FISU global strategy, the FISU programmes offered to member federations in 2018 and 2019, and the FISU help programme, which always plays a major role for African countries."
Seminar attendees also had numerous questions for Lilia Barieva, FISU’s director of education and development, and Tarmo Jaakson, FISU’s development and NUSF relations manager.
"The NUSF representatives showed great interest in helping promoting the International Day of University Sport and to be active also in the FISU ambassadors programme," Eder said before commenting on the media coverage that the event generated.
"The local and national media interest was outstanding, as many TV stations reported from the seminar."
The speaker line-up included the voice of students with FASU Student Committee member Henry Nsekuye speaking about his experience representing Uganda at last month’s FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy in Kazan in Russia.
During the eight-day Academy, Nsekuye studied advanced sports management skills and federation management best practices alongside the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
The young leader gave an inspired speech to encourage more African countries to send representatives to the Academy in the future and to host more international university sport events on the continent in the coming years.
"This event is very important for further development of National University Sports Federations in Africa," Ralethe said during the meeting.
"A seminar is a great platform to exchange our ideas and knowledge.
"It’s very important for us that FISU is also here to learn about our needs and to support us."
The ninth edition of the All Africa University Games is due to conclude tomorrow.
The event begun last Monday (July 2).