by Skola Sengi – EM TV Sports, Port Moresby
With the success of the Sepik Ironman, sports is predicted to attract much needed development for Wewak, while sparking the revival of the East Sepik tourism industry.
Over time, most provincial sports infrastructure has deteriorated, due to lack of funding, and poor management.
However, once complete, the existing stadium will host regular competitions and stage tournaments within the province.
Sports is recognised as a vehicle to address social issues, rehabilitate communities, and bring in much needed development of infrastructure, funding and assistance in health and education services.
Law and order issues have deprived the tourism industry for the East Sepik Province and the township of Wewak in the past.
The Sepik Ironman becomes the second major event, marked alongside the Sepik Mask Festival in the tourism calendar of the province.
The stadium is going under further construction. With an extension to the existing tracks to meet world standard and the addition of multipurpose courts should cater for seeded competitions within Wewak.
In the coming weeks, a projected screen will be mounted on the main stand, for the coverage and duration of the Pacific Games.
Once complete the stadium will host multiple sports competitions and tournaments over the years. With the prospect of bidding for the PNG Games.