More than 30 African rugfederations will gather in Morocco for the RugAfrica Summit

MARRAKESH, February 7, 2019 – The African association of World Rugby, RugAfrica, is organising the first RugAfrica Summit to be held on the 27th February to 2nd March 2019 at the Adam Park Hotel in Marrakech (Morocco). On the agenda are an executive committee meeting of the association for the continent, training workshops, and 13th General Assembly.

Over 30 presidents from the different African rugfederations will be there, bringing with them many illustrious names from the world of rugand sport in general, to participate in three days of debates and exchanges and to celebrate African rugby. Among the anticipated guests are Mr Mustapha Berraf, President of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa, Mrs Nawel El Moutawakel of the International Olympic Committee, David Carrigy, Head of Development at World Rugby, Bernard Lapasset, former President of the International RugBoard (IRB), and Bernard Laporte, President of the French RugFederation (FFR).

This gathering is a pivotal moment in the evolution of RugAfrica, formerly known as the African RugConfederation (CAR), as it marks the end of President Abdelaziz Bougja’s term of office after 17 years of service to African rugby. Originally elected president of the CAR at the General Assembly of Yaoundé in 2002, President Bougja was re-elected in 2006, 2010 and 2014.

“In 2002, the CAR had 16 members, today there are 39. In 2018, the various national teams from 24 countries participated in competitions organised RugAfrica. The qualifiers for the 2019 World Cup generated nearly 2 million views on social media. Rughas become very much a mainstream sport and is widely played in Africa. In 2018 alone, we introduced 459,000 young people to the joys of the oval ball. Our sport is the one with the highest growth rate in Africa,” Abdelaziz Bougja explained.

“My successor will inherit a stable and professional organisational structure. We have set out clearly defined plans and priorities. One of them is to promote the participation of women in African rugby. To this end, we propose to nominate a minimum of two women to the Executive Committee, but I hope we will have more. I am looking forward to this summit, which will be a real celebration of African rugby, Africa, its culture and its diversity. I am also delighted to be able to hand over the torch in my native country, Morocco,” the President of RugAfrica declared.

The General Assembly will be an opportunity to renew several trusty partnerships, reinforcing the links between RugAfrica and the South African RugFederation (SARU) and the French RugFederation (FFR). It will conclude with the presentation of awards to the federations and the election of the new executive bureau of RugAfrica.

“Rugis now the fastest growing sport in Africa. The RugAfrica Summit will be an opportunity to bring together all of the African rugplayers, federations, sponsors, suppliers as well as the various partners to celebrate the sensational development of rugin Africa and the unparalleled sponsorship opportunities offered African rugby. This Summit will also provide an opportunity for the extended family of African rugto thank Abdelaziz Bougja who dedicated 17 years of his life to the development of rugin Africa,” said Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard, Founder and President of the APO Group, RugAfrica’s main official sponsor.

The international and Moroccan media are invited to cover the event on March 2nd at the Adam Park Hotel, Marrakech and to send their accreditation requests to the following address: rugby@apo-opa.org.

An online press conference will be held on Friday the 28th of February at 4pm (Morocco local time). All interested media are welcome to sign up to participate clicking on this link: https://bit.ly/2S5t0u9.

Download the booklet: “The Incredible Rise of African Rugby” (available only in English): www.bit.ly/2oYs0XW

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