A high level delegation from Somali National Olympic committee under the leadership of President Aden Hajji Yeberow today visited the Italian National Olympic committee headquarters in Rome, where they held a lengthy meeting with the Italian Olympic committee president Giovanni Petrucci and his Raffaele Pagnozzi.
Somali NOC president Aden Hajji Yeberow told reporters that during the meeting both sides raised issues including the creation of a strong and bilateral relations between the Somali Olympic committee and Italy.
The president said the Somali NOC delegation went to Italy under the invitation from Italian Olympic committee in a bid to restablish and strengthen relations between both sporting organizations.
“The president of Italian Olympic committee Mr. Giovanni Petrucci told us that he was impressed at how the Somali NOC operates in such chaotic country for more than two decades. On behalf of Somali NOC, I praised the Italian NOC presidnet and his secretary general for the huge welcome and the friendly receiption they gave us,” President Aden Hajji Yeberow said in a via phone press conference for the local Somali media today Wednesday.
Somali NOC first vice president and head of international relations Duran Ahmed Farah said a new era of great cooperation emerged for both Olympic committees.
“Somalia and Italy have an age-old history of cooperation and we as the Somali NOC want to be the pioneer of the rebuilding of the relationship between both people and Olympic committees,” the Somali National Olympic committee told the media.
He said the Italian Olympic committee promised to assist Somalia in terms of trainings and the enhancement of sports education.
“The warm welcome we received during our stay at the Italian Olympic committee headquarters was commendable,” the first vice president told the media.
Somalia has a long existing relationship with Italy who once colonized the horn of African country.
The facility ‘stadioum Coni’ was named after the Comitato Olimpico Nazionale Italiano “CONI” which was built for Somalia nearly 50 years ago.
The Coni stadium was launched in 1956. The first match it hosted was between a team from the Italian community in Somalia and the Somali National soccer team.
Olow became the top goal scorer of Banadir regional district football competition in 1963. In 1974, he was the first Somali basketball referee to become international referee. The current Somali NOPC president AdenHajji Yeberow was also the second to become international baskedball referee the folowing year.