The Chairman of the ANOCA Athletes’ Commission, Amadou Dia Ba’a attended the three-day Forum with other Africans, including Enee Udong (ANOCA), Kirsty Coventry and Aya Medani (IOC), Kady Kanouté (WADA) and Nadia Cruz (World Olympians Association).
The Forum brought together representatives of International Federations, Continental Associations, Olympic Games Organising Committees, WADA, International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the World Olympians Association (WOA). They brainstormed the best strategies possible to support athletes and combat doping. The meeting also sought to devise workable strategies to revive the various athletes’ commissions.
“It’s time to reflect on everything achieved from the two-way dialogue over the previous three days. It speaks volumes that these athletes are all here working behind the scenes. They’re effecting change, and we must continue to be a part of the conversation. Athletes are stakeholders that should have an equal part in the conversation,” declared Angela Ruggiero, Chairlady of the IOC Athletes’ Commission.
She then went on to summarise the key outcomes of the Forum, including the need for a strong network of Athletes’ Commissions that is united and connected; the need for better, clearer and consistent communication within the network of Athletes’ Commissions and from the IOC Athletes’ Commission; an objective for Athletes’ Commissions to be the true voice of athletes to ensure their credibility.
Discussions with dignitaries
The Forum was graced by IOC President, Thomas Bach, who on the occasion exchanged with participants on such issues as gender equality, protection against harassment and abuse of communication between athletes and the IOC. Speaking about this interaction, Thomas Bach termed it “a great experience” that “gave many new ideas for the further development of the Games and the IOC.” Participants also held discussions with Beckie Scott, Chair of the WADA Sports Committee and Richard Budgett, IOC Medical and Scientific Director. Here, emphasis was laid on the rights and responsibilities of athletes with respect to anti-doping protocols and measures taken recently, including the new Independent Testing Authority
Athletes’ Charter of Rights and Responsibilities in the offing
The development of a Charter of Athlete Rights and Responsibilities was another crucial item on the agenda. It should be noted, in this regard, that the steering Committee of the Charter held its first productive meeting during the Lausanne come together. For Sarah Walker, member of the IOC Athletes’ Commission it will be a “document by athletes, for athletes. We want a minimum standard of human rights for athletes,” she further noted. The Charter mainly addresses topics like communication, governance, marketing, integrity and clean sports, sports competition, career transition and welfare.
The Lausanne Forum also featured a number of workshops that reviewed the most efficient and practical means of giving athletes a stronger voice through the IOC Athletes’ Commission.
A panel comprising Sergey Bubka, Yang and Carl Probert also presented the lofty achievements of the athletes’ representatives.
While commenting on the event, IOC’s Kirsty Coventry noted that they all tried to make the best of the time spent with together, and to get as many honest comments as possible to give assurance that the Commission is leading world athletes and concentrating on priorities. She hoped that it will be even more exciting next year since, after having fine-tuned the strategy, they could truly buckle down to the task.
The Mali National Olympic and Sports Committee (CNOSM) organised the first ever National Youth Games from 24 to 31 December 2017 in Bamako.
The Kanyosha Olympafrica Centre, Burundi, has been quite alive of late with intense youth development activities organised for the centre’s residents.