18 Oct 2012

Sport: Tonga says Pacific Games bid will create lasting legacy

12:03 pm on 18 October 2012

The Tonga National Olympic Committee says their 2019 Pacific Games bid is an opportunity to create a lasting legacy for sport in the country.

Delegates from 22 Pacific countries are in Wallis and Futuna this week to decide whether Tonga or Tahiti will host the Games.

Tahiti have staged the event twice before, and already have established facilities, but Tonga has pledged to build new venues if they're awarded the Games for the first time.

The Secretary General of the Kingdom's Olympic Committee, Takitoa Taumoepeau, says the new facilities would be a lasting benefit for future generations.

"They're not just there for the time of the Games you know - we're not just hosting or doing a spectacular event for 12 days. There is life after that and I think that is the legacy of the Games, leaving all these facilities that most of those national federations will enjoy and continue their development programmes for their athletes. We need this Games for our kids."

The Pacific Games Council's General Assembly begins on Thursday and both bidding countries will make a presentation on Friday afternoon before the votes are cast.