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29 Aug 2004
IOC News

Four new IOC members

Four new IOC members have been elected during the close of the 116th IOC Session in Athens: Rania Elwani, Frank Fredericks, Jan Zelezny and Hicham El Guerrouj. They are new representatives of the Athletes’ Commission to which they have been elected by their peers during the Athens Games.

Frank Fredericks’s busy day
Frank Fredericks had a busy day on Thursday. In the morning, he was one of four athletes elected by his peers to represent them on the IOC Athletes’ Commission and, in the evening, he ran in the 200m final at the Athens Olympic Stadium. The Namibian national came fourth in the final, just falling short of adding another Olympic medal to his existing collection of four silvers won in the 100m and 200m at the 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games.

One of 19 members of the Athletes’ Commission
Although Fredericks participated in his last edition of the Games in Athens, he will not be retiring from the world of international sport, as he is now one of the 19 members that make up the Athletes’ Commission, the consultative body within the IOC that upholds the right and obligations of the athletes.

A voice for African countries
He says that he aims to represent the developing world within the IOC, “People wanted a voice, especially the African countries, and now they have one,” he says. The first ever participation for Namibia in the Games was in 1992, and Fredericks says that it was not until he returned home with two silver medals that he realised what it could mean to a nation. “Everybody was so excited that we could compete against the best in the world.” He admits that a large part of participating in the Games is about competition, but says that it is more about touching people, “I inspired so many athletes in my country through the Olympic ideals.”

Untapped talents in Africa
Fredericks hopes that, with the backing of the IOC, he will be able to help the poorer nations and give them the opportunities to reach top levels in international sport. “I think that there is still a lot of untapped talent in Africa,” he says.

Fight against doping
The fight against doping in sport is also one the points that Fredericks aims to concentrate on as an IOC Athletes’ Commission member. He would like to educate athletes on doping issues, saying that there are still too many athletes that want to take the short cut. “My mission is to spread the gospel of competing clean. I have been around for 14 years and have done it clean. I know it is possible for every athlete to get an Olympic medal by competing clean.”

Learn more on Athens 2004

Official website of Athens 2004
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