April 8 – The Sport Integrity Global Alliance (SIGA) and Inside World Football launch today the first edition of ‘4 Questions for 4 Leaders’, focusing on how the Olympic movement are dealing with the Coronavirus global pandemic, the impact on sport in different regions across the world and the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The article, which is available on both Inside World Football’s website, as well as SIGA’s, compares the different reactions of four National Olympic Committee Presidents from across the world, namely Portugal, the Caribbean, Kosovo and Brazil.
The novel Coronavirus brought severe constraints and challenges to the world of sport with the suspension of most national international sports competitions, notably the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, with a strong impact over the management of sports organisations and the preparation of athletes and teams. SIGA asked four leaders from the Olympic movement to share their perspectives on this developing scenario and how they are addressing it. On the subject of the postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games, each of the President’s explained the position from their respective nations:
José Manuel Constantino, President, National Olympic Committee of Portugal stated: “I agree with the postponement of the Games, in line with the appeal and the official position of the COP to the IOC in this regard. The decision fails however, not only for being late, but fundamentally due to communication and guidance given by international sporting authorities.”
Brian Lewis, President, National Olympic Committee of Trinidad and Tobago and President, Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees commented: “I totally agree with the decision to postpone the Games. We can’t underplay the risks of Covid-19. Its life and death. Given the difficult and complex negotiations and discussions required with an event of the magnitude of the Olympic Games it was handled as well as it could have been. I am sure the IOC have taken onboard the lessons.”
Besim Hasani, President, National Olympic Committee of Kosovo stated: “I fully agree with postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics for next year! In the meantime, Kosovo NOC is going through all SIGA principles, enhancing its governance and planning the next SIGA Forum and SIGA Talks we would like to host again in Pristina at the end of this year. Coronavirus is not capable to slowing down SIGA Sports Integrity Reforms!”
Paulo Wanderley, President, National Olympic Committee of Brazil explained: “The Olympic Committee of Brazil was one of the first National Committees to speak publicly in favour of the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Therefore, we saw with relief the postponement of the event. The decision was made to protect the health of athletes and everyone involved in the biggest sporting event in the world, which has to be the priority at this time.”
The “4 Questions for 4 Leaders” initiative will call on leaders from the sport, business and political worlds to share their views on topical developments related to sport integrity and the fight against corruption in that sector.
Speaking about the new initiative, Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros, CEO of SIGA and Chairman and CEO of SIGA AMERICA, said: “In the worst moments, leaders can emerge, and solutions can be found. This is the time for leaders to step forward and show the way. Sports competitions may be on hold, but the industry must move on and get ready for the “day after”. The “4 Questions for 4 Leaders” initiative that SIGA is launching, in partnership with Inside World Football, aims to do just that: provide leaders in the sporting industry with a global stage and unique opportunity to address critical issues and show what they are prepared to do to bring about the much-needed reforms.”
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