The Indonesian National Sports Committee (KONI) of Papua Province is keen to make Papua the centre for sports in Melanesia and will explore this possibility with neighbouring countries in the Pacific Region. General Secretary of KONI Papua, George Weyasu said the desire was to utilise the existing international standard venues formerly used to host events during the 20th National Sports Week (PON XX).
He added that representatives of Pacific region countries will be visiting KONI Papua this March. KONI Papua wants to introduce to them the international standard venues they have and show the progress of sports facilities in Papua.
“In March we will be receiving guests and we will introduce and bring them to see our venue facilities. The guests come from the Pacific, especially from Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu,” George Weyasu told sports journalists at the KONI Papua Office, recently.
“Later on there will also be representatives from New Zealand and Australia, and depending on the technical aspects, whether only a few countries will come here to see our readiness in accordance with our desire to make Papua a Melanesian sports centre,” he continued.
George explained, the desire to make Papua a Melanesian sports centre is to take advantage of the former PON XX venues and make Papua as Indonesia’s veranda to the Pacific Region.
“Our goal is simple; we want to utilise our facilities and make Papua Indonesia’s veranda to the Pacific region. They can then see the progress of Papua, and how the sports facilities have also progressed,” he said.
Not only that, but George also revealed that KONI Papua would also approach Pacific countries to pioneer international events or championships.
“What if for instance, we hold the Melanesian Solidarity Games here. If they agree, it means we can do the event here. There they have their own sports event for the Pacific called the Pacific Games. And Papua is also invited, maybe we will attend to compete in Rugby, “he said.
Meanwhile, the regional sports celebration or the Papua Provincial Sports Week (Porprov) may be cancelled this year. The reason is that the Indonesian National Sports Committee (KONI) of Papua Province has yet to receive a grant from the Papua Provincial Government.
General Secretary of KONI Papua Province, George Weyasu admitted that his side still depends on the Papua Provincial Government to carry out athlete development programmes including holding the regional sports celebration.
“The possibility that Porprov will not be staged is because until today we have yet to receive an answer from the Papua Provincial Government. KONI’s dependence on the Regional Government is large because it is indeed a grant that allows us to organise the event,” George said.