Jakarta (ANTARA) - Chairman of the Indonesian National Sports Committee (KONI) Lieutenant General (ret) Marciano Norman is confident that the National Games (PON) XX in Papua will be as successful as the Tokyo Olympics 2020.

“Your presence and contribution give us all the encouragement that the 2021 PON XX in Papua will run well just like the Tokyo Olympics," Norman remarked while opening the Chef de Mission (CdM) Meeting III, as quoted in a written statement received by Antara on Saturday.

The XX PON 2021 in Papua will be held as scheduled. The event will officially open on October 2, 2021.

"This is a very difficult time during the COVID-19 pandemic to hold PON that has been postponed for a year, and we plan to hold it on October 2-15, 2021," Norman remarked at the event held at the Hotel Horizon, Kotaraja, Jayapura City, Papua.

He believes that Indonesia can take a cue from Japan that had successfully held the Olympics.

"We have a very good example when we look at the Tokyo Olympics that went smoothly amid COVID-19 with the implementation of very strict health protocols. If Japan can hold (the Olympics), we can do it too in Papua," Norman affirmed.

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Regarding efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19, he affirmed that the government had made all-out efforts to encourage vaccination. Some 70 percent of the people around the venues in Papua are specifically targeted for vaccination.

Thus, the 33 provincial contingents do not have to harbor any concerns over competing in Papua, he said, adding that he also invited the entire contingent to participate in making the PON XX a success.

"I invite you all. Let us make PON XX in 2021 as the games that unify the nation. Some 33 provinces with their athletes come to Papua along with their Papuan brothers and sisters to participate in the sports event held once in four years," Norman remarked.

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Translator: Dadan R, Resinta S
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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