Thirty two universities have confirmed to compete at next years Eastern Africa University Games (EAUG) to be hosted in Dar es Salaam.
The EAUG vice-president, Noel Kiunsi, said the country was to host the event this month but pushed it back due to reasons beyond control.
Kiunsi said the purpose of the games is to promote unity among the East African countries through sports as a universal language, to promote interaction amongst students within the Universities.
Encouraging professional growth through seminars, conferences and research among others.
He said the village for the athletes will be at Mabibo Hostels and before the games kick off, there will be Pre-Games conference starting from February 6.
Among other things, a discussion on how sports can be a tool to economic development in the region will be held.
Kiunsi said the games are modeled on the Olympics Games pattern whereby there is usually competition in all major disciplines, namely Football, Handball, Hockey, Rugby, Basketball, Netball, Athletics, Scrabble, Chess, Tennis, Table Tennis, Badminton, Swimming, Martial Arts and other games.
He said the games are run by the local organizing committee whose mandate includes planning, inviting teams, guests, providing the venues, sourcing for officials and providing for meals and accommodation and other logistics.
The official said currently they are busy improvising some courts and swimming pools at the University of Dar es Salaam and they will also use Lugalo Secondary School hockey courts and the National Stadium for athletics.
“Tanzania will host the biannual games of unity, athleticism, growth and competition between universities of Eastern Africa.
The games would give athletes opportunity to showcase talents with competitors from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda and Southern Sudan,” he said.
He also said the country will use the games to select the team which will compete at the next year’s World University Games to be held in Russia in July.