Swimming federation has no achievements in a decade
KABUL (Pajhwok): National Swimming Federation (NSF) officials say the federation has no achievements over the past more than a decade due to absence of facilities for athletes.
The NSF was created in 2004 as an independent federation and it has been able to establish relations with Asia’s and world’s swimming federationss and Olympic councils.
NSF head Sayed Ihsanuddin Taheri in an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News said 11 swimmers including three girls, were registered with the federation based on favoritism.
Despite their participation in international competitions, none of them had so far achieved any medal for Afghanistan, he said.
Calling the absence of swimming pools a serious problem, Taheri said: “We have three female swimmers, but they are deprived of improvement and training due to absence of swimming pools for them.”
The NSF has been trying to provide a proper place for female swimmers so they could observe Islamic rules like in other Islamic countries during swimming and participate in regional and world competitions, he said.
Currently 30 swimming pools including 20 in capital Kabul are open, but there is no exclusive pool for female swimmers.
Incompetency of previous NSF officials
Taheri complained about the weak performance of pervious NSF officials and unprofessional training to swimming athletes. “In addition to doing nothing for the development of swimming, the previous officials did not even build a swimming pool.”
“If officials of the Physical Training Department and the National Olympic Committee cannot work together, then they should resign and let the Afghan athletes be improved,” he said, blaming the two departments of failing help the athletes improve.
Lack of cooperation from institutes concerned
NSF head said differences among sports officials have also prevented the sports sector from developing. Athletes are currently chosen for competitions based on favoritism, he added.
“NSF is an independent department, it should have support of the government, the National Olympic Committee and Physical Training Department, but unfortunately the NSF is forgotten,” Taheri said.
He added the NSF missed five regional competitions and training courses due to lack of cooperation from relevant organs. “We would not be able to participate in world matches that would take place in near future if the federation pays no attention,” he warned.
NSF future programs
Taheri said building the capacity of female swimmers, coordination in swimming training at schools, arranging training courses, appointing professional trainers and issuing licenses to swimming pools would be future programs of the NSF.
However, he said implementing the programs needed financial and technical cooperation.
He said his federation had the plan to launch swimming competitions in Kabul, Kandahar, Nangarhar, Herat and Balkh provinces to improve the athletes, but failed to execute the plan due to absence of facilities and support from other organs.
Differences over leadership of the Afghanistan Olympic Committee in recent years have worsened the situation of the sports sector.
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