African group gives CWG officials 24 hours for improvements

Diplomats from all the participating Commonwealth nations were Saturday taken for a visit to the Games Village, but the African countries had complained that accommodation for their players were not clean and up to par, as compared to that of other major nations.

The African diplomats had then gone on another visit to see the living areas for their teams Sunday evening.

After the visit, a senior African diplomat said that they had seen some improvement, but there was still work to be done. "We will take a final call after another visit to the village at seven tomorrow (Monday) evening," the diplomat told IANS.

The diplomat noted that there had been some progress in the last 24 hours. "They are working hard," he added.

Earlier, Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi had assured that there will be "no discrimination" against the African countries in the allotment of accommodation.

But, the condition of the residential areas for the African countries was starkly highlighted by South African High Commissioner Harris Mbulelo Sithembile Majeke, who revealed that a snake had been found in one of the apartments.

"Yesterday (Saturday), we found a snake in one of the apartments," Majeke told reporters outside the Games Village where he arrived for another look at the residential area.

"I don't know if it was Indian snake or not," he said jokingly, as he entered the Village, armed with a vuvuzela.

"We have serious conditions about the facilities. It is really disappointing," said Majeke, noting the living facilities were still "very dirty", with the basement being still full of water.

But, he said that the teams were "on the way". "We are definitely participating in the Commonwealth Games," he said.

According to the diplomats, besides the accommodation, the rest of the facilities at the Games Village such as the training centre and dining hall were extremely good.

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