Wednesday, July 21

Paging protocol department

The African Athletics Championship are being held in the Congo. Apparently there were a couple of mix-ups concerning National anthems. These are a couple of medal ceremonies, that I would like to have seen and heard. The first story involves the gold medal winning 4X400 meter relay team from Zimbabwe
There was a moment of pure farce at the African Athletics Championships in Congo, when a Zimbabwean gold-medal winner had to sing his national anthem.

Zimbabwe's men won the 4X400 relay but when they went to collect their medals, the band played the old song.
Oops. "We didn't get that memo about that anthem-sorry".
After several minutes' delay, Lloyd Zvasiya took the microphone himself.

The BBC's Steve Vickers in the Congo capital, Brazzaville, says the 40,000 crowd gave Zvasiya a huge cheer.

Zimbabwe's new national anthem, Blessed be the Land of Zimbabwe, was adopted in 1994, replacing Ishe Komborera Africa, which is used in several countries.
Absolutely brilliant. What else can I say other tan I wish I could have been in attendence. But there is more, call it a variation on a theme without a clue:
The high-jump winner at the All Africa Games had to work hard for his gold medal by singing at the ceremony.

Twice the Botswana national anthem was introduced only to be met with silence, before the embarrassed announcer handed over his microphone to the athlete.

Kabelo Mmono, appearing on the big screen in Nigeria's national stadium, then sang clearly and in tune.

After the ceremony, the shy athlete told the BBC he had not expected to perform but had "surprised himself"