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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Southern Hospitality

FORT VALLEY, Georgia () -- Olympic athletes from war-torn Rwanda have arrived for training in this central Georgia city, but the welcome is not unanimous.


The editor of the weekly Peach County Leader Tribune wrote a column criticizing the community for supporting the Rwanda visit, and some residents have written letters to area newspapers complaining about the $7,000 being collected to help house the athletes.


The nine athletes and coaches arrived Wednesday for their stay at Fort Valley State University.


In his May 29 column, editor Chuck Morley wrote that local officials who contributed funds should not have done so because the African nation is in turmoil and the money could have been spent on local problems.


"No sir, I will not get on the Rwandan bandwagon," Morley wrote. "The Olympics don't mean a thing except to those who will be going to the bank with their pockets full. Shame on us."


Morley said this week that the column was meant to emphasize improper use of public funds, not to show disdain for the Olympic effort.