Lao liaison officials identify glitches in first practice run

Posted by samakomlao Monday, November 16, 2009

Liaison officials encountered some problems during a golf practice run on Monday, according to one of those taking part in the exercise.

Liaison officials have been selected from among students at the National University of Laos and are charged with taking care of and assisting athletes and delegations during the 25th SEA Games next month.

The first rehearsal of their duties at the golf test event brought several problems to light, which will have to be resolved before the games get underway.

One of the group's duties is to get up very early to pick up players at the SEA Games Village at the university's Dongdok campus.

Before they set off on their practice run on Monday, they were given papers containing information about the players and how they were to help them.

“It would have been easier if we had been given the papers a day earlier. This would have given us time to find out who the players are and how we should take care of them. But the information was given to us just before we left, so we had no time to find out about everything in advance,” the liaison official said.

He said the rehearsal in general was rather confusing because they didn't know who the players were and where to take them. When they arrived at the village, there was more confusion as some group leaders told them to raise the country name of the players, while others told them not to, but to just go inside and ask for the players in their allocated group.

“Another problem was that we didn't know which bus our players would take. It took us quite a long time to find the bus and get on it before we went to the golf course,” he said.

There were also other difficulties concerning caddies, who were supposed to be prepared for the arrival of the golfers. But when this particular liaison official arrived with three golfers, there was only one caddy and no one else to carry the other golf bags.

A large contingent of volunteers from the university and colleges around Vientiane is helping the SEA Games Organising Committee with their work.

Most have been given training by the various committees involved on how to take care of guests and athletes during the games.

Monday's trial run was a valuable experience in preparing the helpers for the real event next month.

“We will note down all the problems and report them to our supervisors. They need to find solutions as soon as possible. Certainly this has been a useful experience because they've never put the system to the test before,” the liaison official said.

In spite of the problems, everyone left the SEA Games Village and arrived at the golf course on time.

Another liaison official told reporters her group had no problems because the players were already waiting at the collection point, but confirmed other groups had had trouble locating the players they were supposed to be meeting.

The practice run has given supervisors some food for thought and they can now streamline the procedure in the few remaining weeks.

By Souknilundon Southivongnorath

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