Namibia: Nedbank Citi Dash Postponed Until 2021

Nedbank Namibia has announced that the popular Nedbank Citi Dash, slated for 6 September 2020, has been called off and has now been rescheduled to take place next year.

"A new date will be set shortly upon further engagements and finalisation with all of our stakeholders," said JG van Graan, Nedbank Namibia's chief financial officer.

Last year's Nedbank Citi Dash attracted 2 500 participants and the organisers set their sights on eclipsing that number when the mass participation event was launched just over a month ago. "Even at the time of the launch, we were fully aware that social distancing measures could yet impact our plans for the event," said Van Graan.

"We have had constructive discussions with the Namibia Sport Commission (NSC) following the announcement by President Hage Geingob that Stage 4 of the lockdown exit strategy has been extended to 10 weeks and believe the decision to postpone the event until next year is absolutely prudent."

The NSC's Chalo Chainda says the guidelines issued by the Commission are in keeping with the state of emergency regulations by limiting public gatherings to 250 persons.

"Our measures require organisers of sporting events involving mass gathering to seek the approval of the NSC, and we appreciate the proactive manner in which the Nedbank Citi Dash organisers have engaged the Commission throughout this process. We fully support their decision to postpone the event until next year."

Patrick de Goede, Cycletec's race director for the Nedbank Citi Dash, says the decision to postpone was a tough one to make. "The race has quickly endeared itself to our communities, and we were very hopeful to still host it this year. We have, however, committed ourselves to follow the NSC guidelines when we launched the event - and the reality is that the running calendar will become immensely congested beyond 17 September."

De Goede says the organising team will continue their discussions with the NSC, Athletics Namibia, the Namibia National Olympic Committee, runners' clubs and the sponsors of the Nedbank Citi Dash to set the new date for 2021 as soon as possible.

Van Graan said Nedbank Namibia remains committed as title sponsor of next year's event. "In fact, we will still host a fun-filled event for families on the date originally scheduled as race weekend for the Nedbank Citi Dash. We will be adhering to the NSC guidelines, as the safety of patrons at Nedbank events is of paramount importance to us.

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