CIS Visit to Nouakchott Print
Friday, 03 May 2013 08:40
CIS in Mauritania


Thanks to our excellent President Kirsan Nikolayevich Ilyumzhinov for investing huge sources in Chess in School Program of FIDE. The last 18 years of work produced impressive examples of chess in schools movement around the globe.

One of those examples is Mauritania. As a Chairman of CIS Commission I have made an official visit to Nouakchott from the 25th of April to the 1st of May 2013.

Mauritania is an Arab Maghreb country in North-West Africa. It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean (650 km coast length) in the west, Western Sahara in the North, (Algeria and Morocco), by Mali in the east and South east, and by Senegal in the southwest.
Nouakchott is a young capital comparing with other in the world, it was selected as a capital in the 80s. Population of Mauritania is more than 3,3 million, and its area is 1,030,700 km2
The population of Nouakchott is more than 1 million. It is important that Mauritania'spopulation is very young, average age is 19 and there is more than 1 million inhabitants under 14. That makes it very attractive for chess in schools. As you may predict, official languages of Mauritania are Arabic and French.

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A view of Nouakchott 

As we have planned with my dear colleague Mr.Lakhdar Mazouz (President of African Continent), Mauritania is one of the countries where we start FIDE CIS program.

Arrival: 25 April 2013
When I arrived at 5.45pm, it was not a surprise for me to get a very warm welcome by MCF at Nouakchott Airport. The President Dr. Abdallhi Ould Mohamed Elmokhtar Ould BAH, met me at the door of the plane and in 'salle d'honneur', I have met our friends, General Secretary & Delegate, Mr. Ali Moctar KREIKED, and Technical Director, Mr. Sidi Mohamed Ould TAJIDINE. I have to say that we all know those volunteer heros of MCF very well from Olympiads, FIDE Congresses and GAs for almost 20 years. In the hotel I also met the young Vice-president of the Federation Mr. Ahmed Ould TALEB MOHAMED.

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L-R: Sidi Mohamed Ould Tajidine (Technical Director of MCF), Dr.Old Bah (President of MCF), A.N.Yazici 

President Dr.Old Bah is an engineer and businessman, and his father, a very well known person in Mauritania, is a great chess lover.

Day 1: 26 April 2013

Since 26th of April was a holiday in Mauritania, we met with President late afternoon and visited famous Fish Market in Nouakchott. I have to mention that I will follow the schedule and I want to share with you all the information, not only the chess-related.

Fish Market
Fish from Atlantic Ocean is at the moment the main export product of Mauritania (the country does have good natural resources as oil, gas, gold, iron, phosphate; but it has not become business yet). Although the industrial fish capital is in Nouadhibou on the north very close to Morocco, the fish market in Nouakchott was fruitful to make a touristic visit.

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from 1 km to Fish Market you may get the beautful smell of fresh fish.

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Beautiful Atlantic Ocean

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Day 2: 27 April 2013

By the 2nd day of my visit we started our work intensively; the first address was a private primary school in Nouakchott.

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Children are so lovely, does not matter place, ethnicity and religion, they are our future...

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The result is a draw sure!

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Demonstrating my new dress, discussing matters with teachers, on my right Dr.Cheikh Ahmed Ishak (Medical Commission of MCF)

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L-R: Elmoustapha Cheikh (National Arbiter), Boydia Moulaye (FA), Yazici, Dr.Cheikh Ahmed Ishak (Medical Commission), Kreiked Aly Moctar (General Secretary of Mauritanian Chess Federation - He is a non stop working bee!, incredible engine of federation)

After that visit I have met the board of Mauritanian Chess Federation. After my presentation and proposals, we have discussed how to build the Mauritanian Chess Master Plan and its main engine, Chess in School Project.

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L-R: Tajidine (Technicaal Director), Boydia Moulaye (member), Abdallahi Veten (CIS Director), Dr.Abdallahi Ould BAH (President), Yazici, Kreiked Aly Moctar (General Secretary), Bechir Elhaj (Treasurer Deputy)

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Together with Mohamed HAIBA (National Team Member)

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We have spent around 5-6 hours and came to the common decision, I will mention it later. We have agreed what we will do, How we will do.. We know at the moment what we should request from ministers (will be mentioned in the next report)

Day 3: 28 April 2013

Early in the morning we visited the Academy of Teacher Union, which will be one of our partners for chess in schools project. I was very impressed with the management there which is very enthusiastic to support CIS project for Mauritania.

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President and me together with Mr.Dah Ould Didya Ould Dahan (General Director of the Normal School of Teachers -ENI). 

And next to Academy of Teachers' Union, there was a primary school for practice...

With President Ould Bah we have visited a few classrooms.

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The second visit (after lunch) was to the National Forum of Deaf, a school for children handicapped in hearing.

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Sure they like to play! Esma is talent, who knows she maybe first WGM of Mauritania in the future. 

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Part 2: Visit to ministers, and more... Coming on 9th May 2013.
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