Aga Khan School Tanzania Swimmer hailed victorious at Rio Olympics

30 September 2016

Hilal Hemed Hilal had an impressive performance at the Aquatics Stadium during the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Written by: Shanaz Bhimji

Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania – Hilal Hemed Hilal had an impressive performance at the Aquatics Stadium during the 2016 Rio Olympics. Competing in the 50m freestyle, Hilal broke a new national record for Tanzania, winning the heat in 23.70 seconds. The Tanzania Swimming Association (TSA) has paid tribute to him for an outstanding performance at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Hilal’s swimming career started in Form II at the Aga Khan Mzizima Secondary School in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. The sports education teachers identified his talent in swimming at the early ages and trained him. During his time at school, Hilal represented the Aga Khan Mzizima School at various events and inter-school competitions, winning several medals. While in Form IV, Hilal was selected for the Tanzania National Team in June 2012.

When speaking with Hilal, he acknowledges the Aga Khan Mzizima School for nurturing him. “I will always be proud to have been part of Aga Khan Mzizima School” he says. “My achievement started at this school and this is my second home. I would like to see Mzizima students excel in swimming and taking sport more seriously.”

Hilal is now an Olympian and the Tanzania National Swimming record holder in all events. TSA Secretary General, Ramadhani Namkoveka, described Hilal's feat for winning a heat at the Olympics as a milestone achievement for the country. “You could see the reaction from social media, and many Tanzanians were proud of him," he said, while also thanking them for their support.

The Aga Khan Mzizima School is the first private secondary school to be established in Tanzania after the Arusha Declaration. Since 1980, Mzizima has been at the forefront of educational innovation in Dar-es-Salaam and was one of the first schools to introduce inquiry-based learning methodologies and to integrate IT into all aspects of school life. The school serves 700 students and offers both national (NECTA) and international curricula, including the Cambridge IGCSE and International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB). The Aga Khan Mzizima School, Dar-es-Salaam is managed by the Aga Khan Education Services, Tanzania; an institution of the Aga Khan Development Network.