Eight Cameroonian athletes go missing from Commonwealth Games

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"We have no idea where they are".

"We would appreciate them sticking within the law, enjoying themselves, but sticking within the law", Beattie said. It wasn't the way their training or their training camp was conducted.

Cameroon press attache Simon Molombe told AFP the number of missing athletes had risen to eight - one third of the country's 24-strong team.

He said they were "taking the mickey". Officials said they are monitoring reports of the absences from the federations. "May the success of the South African team inspire aspiring young sports athletes", Government Communication and Information Service's Acting Director-General Phumla Williams said.

Eight Cameroonians - five boxers and three weightlifters - disappeared from the athletes village earlier in the week.

"I appreciate that it's not unimaginable, certainly you could hire a vehicle and drive here, but if that was the case someone would know about it".

"It's obviously disappointing that I think some of the athletes that have come didn't compete as they were scheduled to compete", he added.

Three more boxers have since vanished, sparking an Australian Border Force manhunt.

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Mr Dutton said most Games athletes were on visas that remained valid until mid-May, but he was concerned by two instances in which athletes missed their events at the Games "when that was the reason they were here".

He also said a "formal complaint" had been made with the "Australian police".

"We're obviously looking at it very carefully", Commonwealth Games Federation chief executive David Grevemberg told reporters.

"The authorities are very disappointed with the deserters - some did not even compete", Molombe said.

"We have asked the Commonwealth Games association of India to depart Australia on the first flights available". They're still within their visas.

Prominent barrister Julian Burnside said the athletes' visas could in theory include terms that they have to be present at the Games Village every day.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton took the extraordinary step of warning athletes against trying to overstay their visas. Following the 2012 London Olympics, at least 21 athletes were reported missing, including seven from Cameroon, and four from the DRC, as well as nationals of Guinea, Côte d'Ivoire, Sudan and Ethiopia. In some cases athletes applied for asylum.

Ugandan athletes were also warned against vanishing during Gold Coast 2018 in the lead-up to the event. They aren't going to game the system, and aren't going to stay here.

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