For the first time, Rwanda Weightlifting and Powerlifting Federation will organise a Genocide commemoration competition next month. The event will be staged at Amahoro Indoor Stadium, according to officials.
“We are a new federation in Rwanda; the competition is the first as we look forward to make it an annual event henceforth. At the moment we don’t have a national team so such competitions will help us to select the best competitors, who will represent the country in continental games,” said the federation secretary general, Just Bwanakweli.
He added, “We are also looking forward to partner with the National Paralympic Committee since they have weightlifters that take part in Paralympic Games, and during the memorial event we plan to use that event to officially inaugurate the sport, meaning it will be huge occasion.”
The new federation was officially legitimized after receiving a legal status and the decision to affiliate the Rwanda Weightlifting and Powerlifting Federation was officially announced by International Weightlifting Federation in its Executive Board meeting held on April, in Bangkok.
In February this year, and after a comprehensive evaluation process, the National Olympic and Sports Committee was the first to recognize the new federation.
Bwanakweli revealed that they had plans to register Weightlifting and Powerlifting separately but they were advised by the IPF to make it one, just like other countries.
The variation between Powerlifting from Weightlifting is that the former is a strength sport that consists of three attempts at maximal weight on three lifts: squat, bench press, and deadlift.
As in the weightlifting, it involves the athlete attempting a maximal weight single lift of a barbell loaded with weight plates.
Currently, there are only two certified coaches/trainers and ten weightlifting and powerlifting clubs in the country but only five have registered legally.
The registered ones include; Kigali Weightlifting Club, Nyarugenge, Gasabo, Gorilla and Fitness Clubs but Bwanakweli explained that the rest are expected to register with Rwanda Governance Body (RGB) before the end of the year.