- 16 Mar 2012
- Olympic News
Highlights of the week
On 13 and 14 March, IOC President Jacques Rogge led the discussions during this year’s first meeting of the IOC Executive Board (EB). The EB took a number of decisions, including proposing the candidatures of Tsunekazu Takeda (Japan), Aisha Garad Ali (Djibouti), Pierre-Olivier Beckers (Belgium), Frank Fredericks (Namibia) and Lingwei Li (China) for the election of a maximum of five members by the 124th Session in London. During its meetings, the EB examined the reports by the IOC commissions and administration, as well as the progress of preparations for the next editions of the Olympic Games, i.e. London 2012, Sochi 2014, Rio 2016 and PyeongChang 2018. See the report at www.olympic.org (“News” section).
This week in Vidy, President Rogge has met:
- Carlos Arthur Nuzman, IOC member and President of the NOC of Brazil and the Rio 2016 Organising Committee; and Bernard Rajzman, Chef de Mission of the Brazilian Olympic delegation for the Games in London;
- IOC Vice-President Zaiqing Yu, accompanied by former badminton player, Lingwei Li, who is also a member of the IOC Programme Commission;
- The President of the NOC of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Vasil Tupurkovski; and
- The President of the International Triathlon Union (ITU) and IOC member Marisol Casado.
Mario Vázquez Raña has informed the IOC President of his decision to resign as an IOC member and as a member of the IOC Executive Board, Chairman of the Olympic Solidarity Commission and President of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC). The IOC President thanked Mario Vázquez Raña for all that he had done for the Olympic Movement over more than 30 years.
The President of the Association of the National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), Lassana Palenfo, has been raised to the rank of Officer of the National Order of Merit by Malian President Amadou Toumani Touré. He received this distinction at a ceremony held alongside the sixth edition of the International Convention on Sport in Africa (CISA), which took place in Bamako (Mali) from 1 to 3 March. Lassana Palenfo was also inducted into the African Sport Hall of Fame in the “Administrators” category.
Henry Edmund Olufemi Adefope died on 11 March at the age of 85. He was an IOC member from 1985 to 2006, before becoming an honorary member. He played an active role in sport, leading a number of sports organisations in Nigeria and Africa, including the NOC of Nigeria from 1967 to 1976. He was a member of the following IOC commissions: Tripartite, Apartheid and Olympism, Medical, Preparation for the 1996 Olympic Games, Enquiry for the Games of the XXVII Olympiad in 2000, Evaluation for the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad in 2004, and Sport and Environment. Read the press release at www.olympic.org (“News” section).
INTERNATIONAL SPORTS FEDERATIONS
At the 14th edition of the World Indoor Championships, held in Istanbul (Turkey) from 9 to 11 March, the President of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), Lamine Diack, announced the creation of the IAAF Hall of Fame. To mark this year’s IAAF centennial, 24 athletes will be inducted into this Hall of Fame. An official ceremony will take place during the centennial gala in Barcelona (Spain) on 24 November 2012. Take a look at the official Hall of Fame website - www.iaaf.org/mini/hof/index.aspx - to see the names of the first 12 athletes selected for induction. The IAAF Council also met in Istanbul, taking a number of decisions, in particular concerning the organisation of various championships. Detailed info at www.iaaf.org.
On 18 June 2012, the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) will celebrate its 80th anniversary. To mark this occasion, FIBA has launched an online photo contest, www.80years.fiba.com. The first prize is a trip for two people to the basketball finals at the Games in London.
A press release by the International Fencing Federation (FIE) has informed us that, from now on, fans and media throughout the world will be able to follow the daily lives, trips and Games preparations of two fencers on the road to London 2012. The blogs of Dutch epeeist Bas Verwijlen and Canadian sabre fencer Philippe Beaudry will be available at www.fie.ch.
The International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) has announced that, at the deadline of midnight on 7 March, all the NOCs concerned had confirmed the participation of their gymnasts in the Games in London, filling the places allocated in their respective countries. These lists will be available on the FIG’s official website. At the Games, the FIG will have a quota of 324 gymnasts. More info at www.fig-gymnastics.com.
Six teams have qualified for the men’s Olympic handball tournament in London from 28 July to 12 August following the 2011 World Championships and the continental qualification tournaments. The six remaining teams will be known after the three Olympic qualification tournaments which will be held from 6 to 8 April. More info on the International Handball Federation (IHF)’s website, www.ihf.info.
According to a press release from the International Swimming Federation (FINA), some 900 athletes participated in the swimming test event held from 3 to 10 March in London’s Aquatic Centre. This test event included the British National Championships and British trials for the Games. From 20 to 26 February, this venue hosted the Diving World Cup and will also play host to the synchronised swimming qualification tournament from 18 to 22 April, with both competitions serving as test events for London 2012.
Furthermore, following a postal vote, the FINA Bureau has made several nominations. Dennis Miller (Fiji) thus becomes the Bureau’s new Vice-President for Oceania, while Matthew Dunn (Australia) becomes the Bureau member for Oceania. The FINA Bureau has also confirmed that a Facilities Committee and High Diving Commission have been created. Full info at www.fina.org.
This week, the International Rugby Board (IRB) informed us of the death of the New Zealand rugby player and administrator, Jock Hobbs, at the age of 52. In his career, Hobbs played 21 matches for the All Blacks from 1983 to 1986. As Chairman of the New Zealand Rugby Union, he played a pivotal role in obtaining the 2011 World Cup for his country. He served on the IRB Council from 2002 to 2007 and was also a member of the IRB’s Executive Committee and Chairman of its Regulations Committee. Info at www.irb.com.
On 1 March, the International Ski Federation (FIS) launched an improved version of www.fis-ski.com for mobile devices. Accessible at mobile.fisski.com (or m.fisski.com), this application has a new, more user-friendly interface and layout.
NATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEES
In the framework of its support to the NOCs, Worldwide Olympic Partner Procter & Gamble (P&G) announced its partnership with the NOC of South Africa (SASCOC) at a press conference on 7 March at Olympic House in Johannesburg. Through this partnership, P&G South Africa will not only support the South African Olympic team for London 2012 but will also be contributing to the development of South Africa’s next generation of champions by assisting in youth development. Those present at the press conference included P&G Vice-President for South and East Africa Stanislav Cecera, SASCOC Secretary General Tubby Reddy, SASCOC President Gideon Sam and IOC member Sam Ramsamy. More info at www.sascoc.co.za.
On 13 March, the NOC of Colombia presented the “Live the Olympic Spirit – London 2012” competition, launched by Worldwide Olympic Partner McDonald’s. Aimed at Colombian 8-to-14 year-olds, the winner of the competition will receive a trip to London during the Games. Those present at the launch included NOC President Baltazar Medina and athletes Mariana Pajón and María Luisa Calle, who have already qualified for the Games in London and are members of the competition jury. More info at www.coc.org.co and www.mcdonalds.com.co/juegosolimpicos.
Through its commission on healthy habits and nutrition in sport, the NOC of Spain has organised a lunch conference on the theme of wellbeing, health and society. The main speaker was Valentin Fuster, the Director of the Madrid-based National Cardiovascular Research Centre and the Director of the Cardiology Institute of the Mount Sanai Hospital in New York. More info at www.coe.es.
On 12 March, in Twickenham, the Princess Royal, IOC member, and Colin Moynihan, the President of the British Olympic Association, joined the families and friends of potential Team GB athletes at an event held as part of the British Olympic Association and British Paralympic Committee’s “Nearest and Dearest” programme. This programme will guide and advise the families and friends of the members of the Olympic and Paralympic teams in the run-up to and during the Games in London. More info at www.olympics.org.uk.
The Indonesian Olympic Committee celebrated its 60th anniversary on 11 March at a ceremony held in Senayan, Jakarta. NOC President and IOC member Rita Subowo made an opening speech recalling the history of the NOC and its participation in the Olympic Games since its recognition in 1952. Other speakers included Sports Ministry representative Djoko Pekik Irianto and former NOC President Agum Gumelar. Info at www.olympic.or.id.
On 6 March at the headquarters of the Lithuanian NOC, a ceremony was held for the national winners of the IOC Art and Sport competition. The jury of experts selected schoolgirl Dovile Grigaliunaite as the winner of the graphical drawings category. Artist Vytautas Karciauskas, won the first prize in the sculpture category with his work entitled “Ecolympics Tree”. The prizes were handed out by NOC President Arturas Poviliunas, in the presence of the teachers and parents of the young artists, representatives of the Ministry of Education and Olympic champions Vida Venciene and Lina Kaciusyte. Info at www.ltok.lt.
ORGANISING COMMITTEES FOR THE OLYMPIC GAMES
At the Global Sports Forum, held in Barcelona (Spain), the “International Inspiration” programme of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) was awarded the J.A. Samaranch Trophy for the most innovative sports-based project. LOCOG Chairman Sebastian Coe participated in a question-and-answer session on the 2012 Games during this Forum. Press release at www.london2012.com.
The Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi in 2014 has announced the launch of a nationwide project for organising the live sites at the 2014 Games in Russia’s major cities. Spectators will be able to see and experience the Games on big screens. The cities of Krasnodar and Sochi are among the first to join this programme, and the first live sites will be opened in these cities to coincide with the 2012 Games in London. It is estimated that 30 million people will visit the Sochi 2014 live sites, giving almost every family in Russia the feeling that they are a part of this great Games experience. More info at www.sochi2014.com.
Worldwide Olympic Partner Procter & Gamble has teamed up with the Greater London Authority (GLA) to launch the “P&G Capital Clean Up” campaign. The campaign encourages Londoners to come together in a show of community spirit and pride for a series of 22 clean-up events taking place across the capital from March to June. More info at