The Maltese Olympic Committee and the Malta Paralympic Committee have issued a plea to the Health Authorities to protect sports activity in Malta and Gozo despite the ongoing threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last year, Health Authorities had decided to bring to a halt sports in Malta with athletes unable to compete or train in sports facilities due to the growing number of COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement, the MOC and the MPC underlined the importance of ensuring the continuity of sports during the uncertain times precipitated by the prolonged persistence of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Whilst cognisant and respectful of the public health considerations and the consequential restrictions that may be put in place by the public health authorities from time to time to curtail the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, the MOC and MPC stress that due regard ought to be had to the negative impact that the imposition of severe restrictions and, or prohibitions on sports-related activities may have,” the statement said.
“In particular, the inability to train and, or organise and participate in competitive events may present a significant obstacle to the continued progression of Maltese athletes and impede the expected benefits of the investments being made to elevate the level of sport in Malta, both at competitive and grassroots level.
“Furthermore, the practice of sports is a central pillar of society at large and is key for our collective physical, emotional and mental well-being.”
The Maltese Olympic Committee and the Malta Paralympic Committee said that the Health Authorities should put the well-being of Maltese athletes as the main priority when determining any measures related to sports.
“The well-being of Maltese athletes ought to be a predominant factor when determining any measures relating to sports,” the statement said.
“These overarching principles necessitate that any decisions regarding the manner how sport is conducted is taken in a manner which upholds sport as a truly holistic and essential element of a well-functioning society and not as an optional extra or pastime.
“We urge all member associations, athletes, and other sports stakeholders and participants to be respectful in expending all efforts to adhere with any applicable rules and regulations, whilst reiterating our belief that the continuity of sports should be supported and ensured. “It is in this context that we appeal to the national competent authorities to uphold the fundamentally important role of sports in people’s everyday lives, for all sportsmen and sportswomen, from amateur to semi-professional or professional levels.
“The Maltese Olympic Committee and Malta Paralympic Committee reiterate their disposition to assist the competent authorities, were required.”