A new judo dojo has been built in Chad's capital city ©IJF

The International Judo Federation (IJF) has opened a dojo in Chad - the fourth facility of its kind that the governing body has built in Africa.

Members of the Government were among the guests as the new building was officially inaugurated in capital city N'Djamena.

It features a judo hall measuring in at 650 square metres, which can be used for both competitions and training.

Changing rooms, showers and toilets are also included at the dojo, which features an aluminium frame structure.

It has been kitted out with a system that protects from the heat outside, as well 30 LED light projectors and ventilation. 

The dojo has been named after Dalou Ladar, who played a key role in training judoka in Chad.

Construction time was only two weeks, with the frame simply lifted into place.

Abakar Djermah, the President of both the Chadian Olympic and Sports Committee and the Chadian Judo Federation, said he first spoke to IJF President Marius Vizer about building a dojo in 2011.

"For years we practiced judo on surfaces of 4x4m in difficult conditions," said Djermah, who unsuccessfully challenged for the African Judo Union Presidency in May, losing to Madagascar's Siteny Thierry Randrianasoloniaiko.

"The dream was to one day be able to create a dojo respecting the rules of international competition, as a legacy to all Chadian judoka. 

"Today in 2021, it is done. 

"This dojo has been a dream for several generations. 

"Today we are lucky to have this opportunity and we will have to maintain it and use it to the maximum. 

"I invite all the National Federations to work hand in hand with their International Federations. 

"Today we can make our dreams come true through our young athletes. 

"I would like to conclude by thanking the International Judo Federation, which has set an example here in Chad."

A hall for competition and training is part of the dojo ©IJF
A hall for competition and training is part of the dojo ©IJF

Chad sent judoka Demos Memneloum to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, but she lost in the first round of the women's under-70 kilograms division.

"When we initiate such a project, there is a long preparation phase," said Felix Fofiu, the chief engineer of the IJF dojo project.

"The first part is about researching if the project is feasible. 

"Then we need all the authorisations from the local authorities. 

"When we can finally start the construction, we first build the concrete slab, with the help of local companies. 

"In parallel, the structure of the building is made in Spain by Vall Structures. 

"This takes roughly one month. 

"After everything is shipped we can start the final phase and that part, here in Chad, took two weeks.

"We spent several years studying different solutions. 

"The centre is made of two buildings - the locker rooms and the dojo itself. 

"I designed the concept and I coordinate everything from beginning to completion. 

"Here we had four mounting experts from the Spanish manufacturer and up to 10 local volunteer judoka, who were really helpful and who are the reason we finished the construction so fast."