Morioka City in northern Japan signs agreement with Republic of Mali to hold a training camp for Mali’s judo team for the 2020 Olympics
Morioka City, the capital of Iwate Prefecture in northern Japan, is the host town of Mali. On January 21st, 2020, the city signed an agreement with the Judo Federation of Mali to hold a training camp for the team before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
At a signing ceremony, Ms. Murakami Kazue, a representative of CARA (West Africa Rural Self-Support Cooperation Association) stood in for the Director of the Judo Federation of Mali. She and the Mayor of Morioka signed and exchanged the agreement.
Then, Mr. Mamadou Doumbia, a Malian artist living in Japan, gave a performance of the Kora, a traditional instrument of West Africa.
Should the Judo players of Mali gain the qualifications necessary to enter the 2020 Olympics, Morioka will hold a training camp as well as exchange events with local citizens.
Morioka City is the first and only Host Town of Mali in Japan.
【The Signing Ceremony】
From the left: Mr. Mamadou Doumbia, Mrs. Dicko Anta Sonfo (Charge d’Affaires ad interim of the Embassy of Mali), Ms. Murakami Kazue, Mayor of Morioka, Stand-in for the Governor of Iwate (Chief of the Morioka Regional Bureau of Promotion), and the Chair of the Morioka City Assembly
【A Talk Show About Mali】
There was a talk show about Mali with Ms. Murakami and Mr. Takahashi Yuji, an announcer from Iwate Menkoi TV.
Ms. Murakami talked about her organization’s activities that support the development of West Africa, like constructing literacy schools, training midwives, teaching weaving so that residents can use that skill to earn money, and more.
Mali is not a very well known country in Japan, but she explained that they like to dance, and that there are a lot of friendly and fashionable people in the country.
【A Night of Malian Music!】
After the signing ceremony, there was a reception where participants could hear three West African musicians play traditional music.
They played traditional instruments like the kola, dundun, and djembe, and the venue was filled with their delightful music.
At the end, Charge d’Affaires ad interim Mrs. Dicko Anta Sonfo and many of the other participants got up and danced to the rhythm of the music.
【Details about the event】
Date: January 21, 2020 (Tue) 14:00-17:00
Venue:Sanseru Morioka (Iwate, Morioka, Shikecho 1-10)
【About Mali and Morioka City】
The link between the two countries is Ms. Murakami Kazue, a representative of CARA (West Africa Rural Self-Support Cooperation Association). She has long worked to support the republic of Mali, and is also a member of the Tokyo Morioka Hometown Association and a graduate of Morioka Daini High School. Through her links to both countries, Morioka applied for host town status.
Sports Tourism Promotion Office, Sports Promotion Division, Civic Affairs Department,
(Japanese language inquiries only)
Office of International Affairs
Iwate Prefectural Government
(English or Japanese language inquiries)