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This year’s Olympic Games in London were officially opened in a spectacular fashion by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. (Photo: Musa Kamara & Bernard Turay during the open ceremony)
Before declaring the games open, there were many performances and firework displays to entertain the crowd and lighting up the whole stadium, it was superb to watch.
HM Queen Elizabeth II in her statement said it is with tremendous pride that the people of London and the United Kingdom welcome the world to the London 2012 Olympic Games.
She went further to say that they are looking forward to celebrating the uplifting spirit which distinguishes the Olympic Games, drawing on Britain’s unique sporting and Olympic heritage.
She said athletes from every corner of the globe speak of their enormous desire to represent their country through sport. It is at the Olympic Games that their many years of dedication and commitment are truly realized.
The athletes’ endeavors and triumphs will excite and inspire wherever they live.
The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Jacques Rogge in his statement said that tonight the opening ceremony marks the official beginning of the Games of the XXX Olympiad, the moment when people around the world come together for 16 days to celebrate sport and human excellence
For the thousands of athletes participating at London 2012 Olympics, the Games represent the culmination of years of dedication, sacrifice and training. Athletes are the true heart of the Olympic Games, and this is their time to shine, to put in the performances of their lives, and to inspire us all.
The IOC President said that he has no doubt that London will offer them ideal conditions in which to achieve their personal best. The local organizers have done a terrific job preparing for the Games and the athletes are eager to turn their Olympic dreams into reality.
He also mentioned that 16 days of world–class athletic performance await us, and the hosts are ready to deliver an excellent Olympic Games that will leave a positive legacy for London, the United Kingdom and the Olympic movement for many years to come. This is the third Olympic Games that London is hosting
The chairman of the London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympics Games, Sebastian Coe, in his own statement said that he have never been so proud to be British and to be part of the Olympic Movement as he is on this day; at this moment the Olympics bring together the people of the world in harmony, friendship, and peace to celebrate what is best about mankind.
Coe stated that all his life he had loved sport. You have to love sport to compete at it there is a truth to sport, purity, a drama, intensity, a spirit that makes it irresistible to watch. London 2012 seeks to capture all of this and London 2012 will inspire a generation.
‘’In every Olympic sport there is all that makes life worth living, humans stretched to the limit of their abilities, inspired by what they can achieve, driven by their talent to work harder than they can believe possible ,living for the moment but making an indelible mark upon history.
‘’To the athletes gathered here on the eve of this great endeavour, I say that to you is given something precious and irreplaceable to run faster, to jump higher, to be stronger.
‘’To my fellow countrymen, I say thank you for making all this possible in the next two weeks we will show all that has made London one of the greatest cities in the world. The only city to have welcomed the games three times. Each time we have done it when the world faced turbulence and trouble and each time the games have been a triumph
‘’Our history as a thriving commercial centre, as a place where the people of all nations have for centuries come to meet, as a city which never stands still, this history has prepared us for today.
‘’For us too, for every Briton, just as the competitors, this is our time and one day we will tell our children and our grandchildren that when our time came we did it right.
‘’Let us determine, all of us, all over the World that London 2012 will see the very best of us.’’
During the ceremony 50‘’VVIP’’guests took the best seats in the stadium in Britain’s biggest ever gathering with over 50 head states in attendance, among the important personalities were US First Lady Michelle Obama, Brazil’s first woman Prime Minister Dilma Rousseff, and a host of others.
During the marching session introducing all the countries in the main bowl, Sierra Leone hopeful in this year’s Olympic Games, Ola Sesay, lead the Sierra Leone delegation into the field with the country flag lifted very high.
The torch, which arrived on a boat driven by football star David Beckham down the River Thames, had been carried into the stadium by five-time Olympic gold medalist Sir Steve Redgrave who carried the torch through an honour guard of 500 construction workers being some of the men and women who created the biggest new park in Europe from a derelict Industrial site.
Sir Steve Redgrave passed the Olympic torch to a young athlete who was joined by six others who represent Great Britain’s hopes for the next Olympics and beyond. The torchbearers lit some of the 206 petals, representing each competing nation, which spread to all the others. The petals then came together to make a single flame.
By Bernard Turay in the UK
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