THOUSANDS THRONG STREETS TO CELEBRATE SOLO 2022 COUNTDOWN & MASCOT LAUNCH
SOLO, INDONESIA – IT was a day filled with fun, joy and excitement as thousands thronged the main street of Slamet Riyadi in the heart of Solo City to join the local organising committee, INASPOC and Asean Para Sports Federation (APSF) in a Countdown and Games Mascot celebration in conjunction with the upcoming 11th ASEAN Para Games Solo 2022.
APSF President Major General Osoth Bhavilai, APSF Secretary-General Senior Colonel Wandee Tosuwan, ASPF directors, delegates and INASPOC officials joined the parade from Loji Gandrung, mingling with Solo community while promoting the Games which is 24 days away, today.
Also in attendance at the event which coincided with Solo City’s Car Free Day (CFC) were the Mayor of Solo, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, who is also the Indonesia Asean Para Games Organising Committee (INASPOC), NPC Indonesia President Senny Marbun and INASPOC Deputy 3, Henry Oka.
The countdown celebration is a culmination of a three-day event organised by INASPOC and APSF which included a Chef de Mission Seminar, the 3rd Coordination Committee Meeting, a Pre-Delegates Registration Meeting (Pre-DRM) and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signing for the Solo 2022 Games.
A total of 1,285 athletes from all 11 Southeast Asian nations have been confirmed for the Solo Games scheduled from July 30 to August 6 here.
The event is part of the Games promotional activities at creating awareness of Para sports and persons with a disability (PWDs) as well as hyping up the Games atmosphere in Solo and ASEAN nations.
Guests and the local crowd were treated to the Reog Ponorogo performance, a traditional dance originated from Ponorogo Regency, which displays physical prowess and supernatural.
APSF President Maj. Gen. Osoth Bhavlai lauded the initiatives, saying that such an event would help promote the Games apart from effectively engaging with the local community and help create awareness on para-athletes and sports.
“APSF will continuously and gladly support its members in promotional activities such as this, as it helps us to reach out to the community more effectively. It also helps boost the local economic and social activities apart from hyping up the Games, para-sports and athletes,” said Maj. Gen Osoth.
On the Solo Games’ preparation, Maj. Gen. Osoth that, all in all, APSF were satisfied with the level of preparations by INASPOC despite the many obstacles faced including on preparation of the suitable venues and other organisational issues.
“The table tennis venue still needs to be sorted out while matters related to arrivals, accommodation, Covid-19 protocols and measures still need to be looked into,” he said.
Gibran, meanwhile said, INASPOC is determined to ensure the Games are trouble and hassle-free. “All areas have been looked into, accommodation, arrivals, health protocols, refurbishment of competition venues…all these areas are being looked into,” said Gibran.
Except for Laos, Brunei and Vietnam, all Chefs de Mission (CDM) were present during the CDM Seminar and Pre-DRM. The Solo Games 2022 is the first held since the 2017 Games in Kuala Lumpur. The previous two host cities – Manila 2019 and Hanoi 2021 – withdrew their hosting job following the Covid-19 pandemic.