28 Feb 2019

Sport: Pacific Games accommodation issues resolved: organisers

10:45 am on 28 February 2019

Organisers of the upcoming Pacific Games in Apia says they have now secured enough accommodation to host all athletes and officials attending the region's biggest sporting event.

The Samoan government confirmed this week that 15 new accommodation providers had been approved to house international technical officials and delegates during the Games in July.

The original plan was for the athletes and team officials to also be based in hotels but a lack of willing providers forced the Pacific Games Office to approach the Methodist Church of Samoa, who agreed to house competitors at their Faleula Compound.

Methodist Church, Faleula, Samoa.

Methodist Church, Faleula, Samoa. Photo: Facebook / Alesi Kurisaru

The Chair of the Organising Committee, Loau Keneti Sio, is confident that all accommodation issues have now been resolved.

"The committee was looking at which hotel is suitable with the situation and the way they are located - not far away from the sports compound - and yet some hotels...they were a bit confused with their usual guests coming in but at least we had the Plan B where we approached the Methodist Church," he said.

"They have their Faleula accommodations for that and they've welcomed the idea to host the athletes there so it's not a big deal anyway."

A Tahitian delegation expressed concerns earlier this month that the athletes facilities, at the Methodist Church of Samoa's Faleula compound, will not enable athletes to perform to their best.

But Loau Keneti Sio insisted that their comments were overblown.

"Actually they have notified me with the (organising) committee but it's not a big deal with that," he said.

"Those guys (from Tahiti) they came in and yet though what they said in the media but actually they weren't in agreement with that - they said it was fine."

Samoa's Sports Minister, Loau Keneti Sio.

Samoa's Sports Minister, Loau Keneti Sio. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Chef de Missions from all competing Pacific Games Associations are in Samoa this week to meet with officials from the Games Organising Committee and to get a first-hand look at facilities.

"Hopefully they are happy with the situation so far...I will say that we're ready to host anyway," Loua said.

The Minister for Sport said 80-90 percent of preparations are now complete and the biggest remaining challenge for organisers is ensuring the infrastructure is ready on time.