Panaji, Sep 23: A combination of incomplete infrastructure and the likelihood of Lok Sabha polls sometime early next year has forced the organizers of the Portuguese Commonwealth games to reschedule the event for mid-January next year.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the Associacao dos Comites Olimpicos de Lingua Oficial Portuguesa (ACOLOP), the organizing committee for the Lusofonia Games at Macau late Sunday.
“Various members of ACOLOP had proposed that the games be held much later next year. But taking into consideration that India would go to polls in early 2014, it was suggested that postponing the Games beyond January 2014 would not be advisable,” the organizers said.
The ACOLOP comprises top sports officials from Goa as well as other members of Portuguese-speaking countries and the meeting at Macau was organized to fine tune the run up to the events before the Games begin.
The Lusofonia Games were scheduled to be held in Goa in November, but the new dates for the Games which have been finalized by ACOLOP are now Jan 18-29.
Officials who were present at the meeting said that incessant rains had resulted in the inability of the host state to build the “necessary infrastructure to international standards” due to which the Games were postponed.
The Lusofonia Games are a Portuguese equivalent of the British Commonwealth Games.
The participating countries include Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal and Sao Tome and Principe. Equatorial Guinea, India and Sri Lanka are associate members of the Games.
Goa was one of the earliest Portuguese colonies in Asia.