PM Minnis to Athletes: Embrace Commonwealth Ideals in Competition

By Matt Maura
Bahamas Information Services

NASSAU, The Bahamas – Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis urged the more than 1,300 athletes, coaches and officials attending the Commonwealth Youth Games 2017 to celebrate the Games in the ideals and values of the Commonwealth.

These include the values of peace, freedom and common purpose for progress and a better and more just world.

Addressing the Official Opening Ceremony of the Games, July 18, at the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium, Prime Minister Minnis further encouraged the athletes, coaches and officials to celebrate the unity of the Commonwealth amidst the diversity of its nations and the vibrant bonds of fellowship and friendship being a part of the Commonwealth of Nations entails.

“What a delightful sight this is. As I look across the Thomas Robinson Stadium, I can feel the exuberance of the athletes and the many thousands of spectators who will enjoy the thrill of competition,” Prime Minister Minnis said.

“The Bahamas is pleased to host the more than 1,300 athletes and the coaches and officials who have come from around the world to celebrate the vibrant bonds of fellowship and friendship of the Commonwealth.

“We are particularly pleased that we can celebrate the unity amidst the diversity of the Commonwealth of Nations. We celebrate the young people and athletic excellence in our community of nations,” Prime Minister Minnis added.

Prime Minister Minnis said the Commonwealth Youth Games represents an opportunity for the participants to continue their pursuit of excellence.

“For many of you, this will be but a first step to greater glory in the years ahead. Names that will resound around this stadium will, hopefully, be the names that we will hear for years to come.

Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert A. Minnis addresses the Official Opening of the Commonwealth Youth Games at the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium, July 18, 2017. (BIS Photo/Derek Smith)

“Indeed this Stadium is named in honour of Bahamian sports hero Thomas Robinson, who won a gold medal in the 200-yard dash and a silver medal in the 100-yard dash at the 1958 British Empire/Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, Wales. He also won a silver medal in the 100-yard dash in the 1962 British Empire/Commonwealth Games and the 1996 British Empire/Commonwealth Games.

“Athletes, you are here because of the sacrifices that you have made and because of your determination and discipline. This has already made all of you winners and deserving of praise and admiration.”

Prime Minister Minnis said The Bahamas is emerging as a place for international sporting events.

“This year, in addition to hosting the IAAF World Relays, we are proud to have hosted the FIFA Beach Soccer Competition, the CARIFTA Swimming Championships and now the Commonwealth Youth Games.

“You are on a global stage. The world is your audience. Endeavour to do your best,” Prime Minister Minnis added before declaring the Games Open.

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