Cameroon Tribune (Yaoundé)

28 November 2012

Cameroon: Etoug-Ebe Champion of Handicapped Sports

This was during the national games for mentally retarded athletes on Sunday.

The National Centre for the Rehabilitation of Handicapped People, CNRPH, dominated the finals of handicapped sports which ran from November 23 to 25. CNRPH came first in the football and athletics competitions to emerge first on the general medal classification table.

They were followed by CESAM and CRERA in the second position and La Colombe in the third position. Medals and trophies were awarded to winners in each category and free tooth brushes and tooth paste were equally distributed to all the participating athletes.

Prior to the competition, there were free medical consultations on the dental health of the athletes dubbed 'Special Smiles' while Medfest checked the general physical wellbeing of the athletes. The competition was organised by the Cameroon federation of sports for intellectually handicapped people in collaboration with Special Olympics Cameroon, the local arm of an international organisation charged with developing the aptitudes of intellectually deficient children through the practise of sports.

Officials of the Ministry of Social Affairs as well as the ministry of Sports and Physical Education were conspicuously absent from the event though invitations were duly addressed to them, hence depicting the levity with which handicapped sports is being treated in the country. On the side-lines of the competition was a training session for trainers and technical officials of handicapped athletes. According to the director of Special Olympics Cameroon, the national games serve as preparation for the world Special Olympics games in 2015.

He therefore called on parents to release their children to take part in the games. He appealed for assistance from government and other well-wishers saying it's been 10 since they started taking care of handicapped children without receiving any assistance.

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