The Zambia Amateur Athletics Association (ZAAA) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) to host the first African Athletics Development Competition at the Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC) next month.

ZAAA President Elias Mpondela said Zambia had been chosen by the International Amateur Athletics Association (IAAF) to represent the African region.

Addressing the media in Lusaka on Saturday, Mpondela said Zambia had been chosen because of its strategic location of having eight neighbouring countries.

“Zambia now stands a great chance of becoming an athletics powerhouse with such opportunities and its strategic position. It is now up to us to attract more of such events by means of being prepared to host at any given time,” Mpondela said.

And CAA Director General Lamine Faty said this was a first step to engaging Zambia more, and hoped that it would be moved to a bigger stage.

Faty also said that CAA would soon hold two championships in Zambia.

He said Zambia was chosen because it was one of the most equipped countries in Southern Africa.

And Ministry of Sports Permanent Secretary Joe Kapembwa reaffirmed government’s commitment to developing athletics in the country.

“The Ministry is in full support of the move by the IAAF through CAA to host the two championships in the country. As government we are always looking for ways of selling the country to the world through sports like athletics that attract a lot of international faces,” said Kapembwa.

Kapembwa said this through National Sports Council of Zambia Acting General Secretary Raphael Mulenga.