IOC shows concern over govt’s interest in POA

POA

In what is tantamount to a ringing endorsement of the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) and negation of the recent resolution passed by some rogue organisations and individuals, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has in a letter duly countersigned by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) reaffirmed the status of POA headed by the elected President Lt. Gen. (retd) Syed Arif Hasan as the legitimate National Olympic Committee of Pakistan.
The letter, issued under the subject ‘To whom it may concern’, has been copied to the IOC President, Jacques Rogge and the OCA President Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah, the POA President and the IOC Member from Pakistan, Syed Shahid Ali, said a spokesman of POA here on Wednesday. “This not only reflects the highest global and continental bodies concern on the events happening in Pakistan against the POA and the Olympic Movement, but also that these have been noticed with some unease at the summit level,” he added. The letter makes it a point to mention that the February 4, 2012 elections were held in the presence of the IOC and the OCA observers, who gave it a clean bill of health with regards to having been “duly and democratically elected” and specifically its President. The letter at the very outset specifically notes: “This is to confirm that the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) currently headed by its President, Lt Gen. (Retd) Syed Arif Hasan, and the office-bearers duly and democratically elected by the General Assembly of the POA on 4 February 2012, in the presence of observers from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), is the sole and unique legitimate body recognised by the IOC (and affiliated to the OCA) to act as a National Olympic Committee (NOC) in Pakistan.” The grim tone adopted while enunciating the POA’s status and subsequently warning the elements involved in trying to create a parallel body is also needs to be noted: “As per the Olympic Charter, the IOC is the sole body that is entitled to recognise a National Olympic Committee (in this case the Pakistan Olympic Association currently headed by its President, Arif Hasan and to authorise such organisation to designate, identify or refer to itself as a “National Olympic Committee” In essence the existence of an NOC, as such, is therefore derived from its recognition by the IOC.
“Consequently, no organisation other than the POA, currently headed by its President, Arif Hasan, can claim to represent the POA or act on its behalf or play the role of an “NOC” in Pakistan. In particular, the IOC and OCA will not recognise any decision, resolution or action of any body or so-called “interim committee” claiming to act on behalf of the POA Any such decision, resolution or action would indeed violate the Olympic Charter and would therefore be automatically null and void.
“It is regrettable to note that the repeated attempts of a number of individuals/bodies to act against the Olympic Charter and to destabilise the legitimate POA currently headed by its President Arif Hasan, do not serve at all the interests of the Olympic Movement and the athletes in Pakistan. On the contrary, this affects negatively the development of the Olympic Movement in Pakistan and has no effect but to expose unnecessarily the POA to protective measures from the IOC Executive Board, for which these individuals/bodies should be held responsible.”
“This is about time the miscreants saw the drift and the gravity of the situation and desisted from taking Pakistan Sports to a perilous point of no return”, commented Gen. Arif.

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