The Confederation of Schools Sport Associations of Southern Africa (COSSASA) held a welcome reception for the visiting officials from Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Swaziland and Lesotho who are in the country for the May 3-6 athletics championships at the National Sports Stadium.
The athletic championships have attracted six SADC countries who will compete in the track and field championships at the NSS from Thursday until Saturday.
Zimbabwe are hosting the games again after 2015 for the ball games tournament.
The championships get underway on Thursday morning and end on Saturday at the NSS.
President of COSSASA Johnson Madhuku saluted the SADC member countries for their heavy investment in school sport and COSSASA.
Madhuku said this is a wise and worthy cause because school sports form the bedrock and foundation of all sport developments and achievements programmes for any nation.
City of Harare deputy Mayor Councillor Enock Mupambawome said sport for years has been a unifier, wealth creator contributing to the gross domestic product of countries and cities as well as entertainment.
He said Harare is improving sporting facilities to ensure children take up sport seriously and afford them an opportunity to compete and earn a decent living.
Cynthia Khumalo, chairperson of the local organising committee said COSSASA plays a critical role in the development of schools sports in the region.
She said as the local organising committee, they are ready to host the games and had managed to deliver despite the difficult economic challenges.
Arthur Maphosa, COSSASA vice president said participation in regional sports championships also has several political, social, economic and educational benefits.
The welcome reception also saw the unveiling of the game logo and members of the COSSASA executive who include Namibian Solly Duiker who is the vice president technical, Paul Fisher – secretary general and Mogametsi Kowa of Botswana – treasurer.
Team Zimbabwe which comprises of 150 athletes has been in camp at Queen Elizabeth school and declared their intention of defending the title and claiming a fifth victory in a row since the inception of the games under the guidance of national team coach Limati Paakamile and the National Athletics Association technical team.