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Council News

Sheikh Ahmad re-elected OCA President

Date : 03 Mar 2019

Bangkok, Thailand, March 3, 2019: The President of the Olympic Council of Asia, His Excellency Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, was re-elected for another four years at the 38th OCA General Assembly in Bangkok on Sunday.

Sheikh Ahmad, who was the only candidate for the post, was re-elected unanimously for the new term 2019-2023. He became OCA President in 1991.

Sheikh Ahmad thanked the General Assembly of representatives from 45 National Olympic Committees in Asia for their “trust and confidence” at the meeting in the Intercontinental Hotel.

“Thank you for showing solidarity for me and the Vice Presidents. This will give us more responsibility to continue to do our job and develop sport and make sure Asia will be one of the leaders in the sports movement,” he said.

“I will do my best to continue working with this organisation, for this house and for our athletes.”

The Kuwaiti sports leader will be supported by one Vice President from each of the five zones: Timothy Fok (East Asia), Maj. Gen. Charouck Arirachakaran (South East Asia), Timur Kulibayev (Central Asia), Lt. Gen. Syed Arif Hasan (South Asia) and Dr Thani Al Kuwari (West Asia).

After the OCA Ethics Committee cleared the Japanese Olympic Committee President, Mr Tsunekazu Takeda, of any wrongdoing connected with the bid for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Sheikh Ahmad proposed that Mr Takeda should continue to work with the OCA as Vice President. This was approved unanimously.

Sheikh Ahmad declared his “full trust” in Mr Takeda and spoke of his high reputation as an Olympic athlete, official and sports leader. “We did not have any doubt about Mr Takeda,” said Sheikh Ahmad. “We will always be happy, proud and honoured to have Mr Takeda with us in the OCA.”

Sheikh Ahmad confirmed the heads of the various OCA committees for the new cycle, with IOC Member from Thailand Khunying Patama Leeswadtrakul becoming Chair of the Culture Committee. Mr Wei Jizhong of China was elected Chair of the OCA Ethics Committee.

In other news:

*The OCA signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the host city contract of the 3rd Asian Youth Games in 2021 with Shantou city in Guangdong province, China. The OCA’s first AYG was in Singapore in 2009 and the second in Nanjing, China in 2013 – both events were dress rehearsals for the IOC’s YOG in 2010 and 2014.

The ancient port city of Shantou has a population of 5.6 million and is a special economic zone of China. Eighteen gymnasiums and stadiums already exist in the city, including an Olympic-size swimming pool. The Chinese Olympic Committee gave their full backing to the bid through OCA Vice President Yu Zaiqing.

*The dates for the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, were confirmed as September 10-25, 2022. The OCA President said the next Asiad would expand the OCA-Oceania relationship by including Oceania NOC athletes in sports which will serve as joint Asia-Oceania qualifying events for the Paris 2024 Olympics. There will be no more than 40 sports and 10,000 athletes at Hangzhou 2022.

*The OCA’s 6th Asian Beach Games will be held in Sanya on Hainan Island, China, from November 28 to December 6, 2020. The sports programme has still to be finalised but will involve about 18 sports.

*The 20th Asian Games in 2026 will be held in Nagoya and Aichi prefecture in Japan, with proposed dates of September 19 to October 4. Organisers plan to submit the Master Plan to the OCA by November 2019. The acronym for the organising committee will be ANAGOC.

*The Chefs de Mission Seminar for the first ANOC World Beach Games in San Diego, California from October 10-14, 2019 will take place from April 7-10. The ANOC Awards will be held on October 9 as part of the ANOC General Assembly in San Diego. The 25th ANOC General Assembly in 2020 will be in Seoul, Korea.

*Olympic Solidarity reported that 277 athletes from 32 NOCs in Asia are training for Tokyo 2020 under OS scholarships. Applications for Beijing 2022 scholarships will start this June and the training programme will run from November 2019.

*Sheikh Ahmad received the President’s Award from International Hockey Federation President Narinder Batra, who is also President of the Indian Olympic Association.

*The OCA signed an agreement with the President of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), Mustapha Berraf, for joint exchange and cooperation.

*The next OCA General Assembly will be held in Sanya, China, in November 2020 before the 6th Asian Beach Games.

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