Dakhla received, on Tuesday night in Brussels, the Euro-Mediterranean Sport Prize 2020, at a grand ceremony organized in the European Parliament.
This distinction was awarded to Dakhla in recognition of Morocco’s efforts for the development of the southern provinces, particularly in the area of sport promotion.
It is also the culmination of the efforts made by local authorities, the external services and all sports associations and clubs to make Dakhla a sporting destination of choice, whether in terms of organizing large-scale events all over the world. year-round, developing infrastructure, or implementing policies and programs to promote sport.
The award ceremony took place in the presence of European personalities, including the European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, several MEPs, President of the Federation of European Capitals and Cities of Sport (ACES Europe), Gian Francesco Lupattelli, President of the Municipality of Dakhla, Sidi Slouh Joumani, and local representatives Hamdi Ahl Sayed and Elmami Ahl Ahmed Ibrahim.
Also present were Morocco’s ambassador to the European Union, Ahmed Rahhou and civil society actors from Dakhla.
In the official ACES Europe magazine distributed during the award ceremony in the European Parliament, the city of Dakhla is cited as the pearl of southern Morocco. The city is considered the gateway to Africa. The magazine estimates that several sports can be practiced in Dakhla, including kitesurfing and board sports. Dakhla has organized major sporting events in recent years such as the African and World Kitesurfing Championships, the Dakhla Triathlon and the Morocco Swim Trek International Open Water Swimming Competition, the magazine recalls.
The ceremony was also marked by the projection of a promotional film, developed by ACES Europe, on the sports assets of Dakhla.
The Euro-Mediterranean city of sport prize is awarded annually to a city that actively contributes to the development of sport and places sport as a vehicle for integrating all social categories. For the 2020 edition, Dakhla was the only city on the southern shore of the Mediterranean to have applied for this distinction.
Dakhla’s candidacy is part of the collaboration carried out by the Mission of Morocco to the European Union with the urban commune of the city. Its objective is to ensure the spread of the city’s sport at the national, regional and international levels and to broaden its base.
It should be recalled that members of the evaluation committee reporting to ACES Europe visited Dakhla from 6 to 8 November to review the city’s candidacy file at the Euro-Mediterranean Sport Prize 2020.
During their stay in Dakhla, the members of the evaluation committee had made visits to the various sports facilities in the pearl of the South, especially the sites intended for the practice of Kitesurfing and water sports, the Royal Golf of Dakhla, the track athletics, the summer resort, the Mohammed VI stadium, the municipal stadium and the Al Massira Municipal football stadium, as well as the indoor sports hall and the covered municipal swimming pool.
These visits enabled the members of the evaluation committee to observe in situ and evaluate the sports infrastructure available to the city and the development effort deployed by Morocco in all sectors of activity and in promoting the role of young people and women in society.