Saturday, September 08, 2012

Taking Ethiopia to 18 holes

(Sept 08, 2012 The East African)--Landlocked Ethiopia with a population of 84 million is Africa’s second most populous country, after Nigeria. The country is only just beginning to recover from decades of terrible hardship.

Ethiopia has invested heavily in athletics and football. Football fields and running tracks and fields can be seen in almost every district in the country’s capital Addis Ababa. The citizens also play volleyball, basketball and handball. Golf is not high up on the Ethiopian agenda, but the country does have two golf courses, both located in the capital.

Addis Ababa Golf Club has nine holes and there is a six-hole course at the British Embassy. There are reports that an 18-hole course is planned in the Legetafo area, part of a huge development that includes a luxury hotel and conference centre. Addis Ababa Golf Club almost fell off the Ethiopian map 15 years ago, largely because of lack of interest among the local community. Golf in Ethiopia, like it was in most of Africa about 50 years ago, is viewed as a sport for the elite or well to do.

Haile Ghebreegziabher, an Ethiopian professional golfer, has embarked on a mission to popularise the sport in his country, and improve the Addis Ababa golf course. Haile says nobody promotes golf in Ethiopia, and neighbouring countries have left them behind in the development of the sport.

“Ethiopia is such a large country with massive land and a population twice that of Kenya, but I have never understood why golf has been lagging so far behind,’’ says Haile. Read more from The East African »

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I do not care. My question is why are we the poorest people in the world.

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