Veteran sports administrator Ng Ser Miang was re-elected a vice-president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at its 136th Session yesterday.
The 71-year-old Singaporean has served the IOC as a member since 1998 and was also vice-president from 2009 to 2013. He currently chairs the IOC Finance Commission and Human Resource Committee and was an executive board member from 2005 to 2009 and 2016 to this year.
The IOC executive board comprises the president, four vice-presidents and 10 other members. The board members are elected, by secret ballot, for four-year terms.
The other vice-presidential slot up for grabs yesterday went to Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates. Ng, who garnered 82 of the 85 valid votes, and Coates, replaced Turkey’s Ugur Erdener and Spain’s Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr.
Ng, chairman of the Singapore Olympic Foundation and Singapore Olympic Academy, said: “Being able to serve on the IOC, be a part of the Olympic movement, and contribute to sport in my own way has always been a role that I have seen as a rare privilege.
“I look forward to working shoulder to shoulder with my colleagues on the executive board, under the leadership of (IOC president) Thomas Bach, as we adapt to the new normal and continue to support the Olympic movement and the Olympic Games.
“I will also continue to leverage on my knowledge and network for the development of sports and the Olympic movement in Singapore, and hope to support more Singaporeans in serving in international sports organisations.”
Ng’s election was confirmed at the IOC’s first virtual Session, the first gathering of world sport’s leaders since the start of the coronavirus pandemic that led to the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Instead of starting next week, the quadrennial Games will now take place from July 23 to Aug 8 next year.
At the Session, Bach also indicated his readiness to run for the IOC presidency for a second term if he has the support of the majority of its 105 members.
During the five-hour Session, the Tokyo organising committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games announced that all 42 venues, including the Olympic Village, international broadcasting centre and main press centre, have been secured.
Next year’s Olympics will also follow an almost identical competition schedule as the one planned for this year before the postponement, with just “small adjustments” to timings.
I will continue to leverage on my knowledge and network for the development of sports and the Olympic movement in Singapore, and hope to support more Singaporeans in serving in international sports organisations.
NG SER MIANG, International Olympic Committee vice-president, after his election to the post yesterday.
The updated schedule means women’s softball will kick off competition at 9am in Fukushima on July 21, two days before the Games officially open, with all events taking place a day earlier than this year’s schedule.
Tickets already secured can be used for next year’s events, while refund options are also available to fans.
Organising committee president Yoshiro Mori said the approach for the Tokyo Games will focus on safety, security, and simplicity to reduce the impact of the postponement, and a three-party council with the Japanese government and the Tokyo Metropolitan government will be set up to prepare for various scenarios to safeguard the health of all participants.
Bach praised the “highly impressive” efforts and plans which give confidence to all that the Games will be a great celebration of humanity, solidarity and resilience.
Meanwhile, the Session also approved the postponement of the Dakar 2022 Youth Olympic Games to 2026, a decision announced by the IOC executive board on Thursday following a request from Senegal President Macky Sall.
The IOC had said the delaying of the first Olympic event to be held in Africa is due to the “large scale of the operational challenges which the IOC, the national Olympic committees and the international federations are facing following the postponement of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020”.