First woman Vice President for Olympic movement in Oceania
By ILIESA TORA at the Sofitel
(Compliments of ONOC)
DENARAU, Fiji-April 1: 5.20pm (Nuku’alofa Times): Palau’s Minister for Women and Community Ms Baklai Temengil has been elected the first woman Vice President of the Oceania National Olympic Committee (ONOC) during the elections at the General Assembly here in Denarau, Nadi, Fiji this afternoon.
In the process she also became the first woman in the Olympic Movement to become a Vice President of any regional Olympic committee.
Ms Baklai, a member of the Palau National Olympic Committee Board, was one of the three nominees for the lone VP post.
The others were New Zealand’s Mike Stanley and Vanuatu’s NOC President Antoine Boudier.
She came through the first round of polls and went into the second round as a clear favourite.
ONOC President Dr Robin Mitchell announced her election and stated that in the process Ms Baklai also became the first woman in the world to be elected to such a position on a NOC Board.
She had also become the first woman Cabinet Minister in Palau when she became a Minister in 2013.
Secretary General Ricardo Blas has also been re-elected in the post.
Dr Mitchell was re-elected unopposed for another four years as ONOC President. He has been President since 2009.
Secretary General Blas returns for another four years.
Ms Baklai replaces Barry Maister.
The other Executive Members are Jim Tobin (re-elected) and the new members are Sarah Walker, Antoine Boudier, Helen Brownlee and Mel Donald. The IOC Members on the board are: Auvita Rapilla, Barry Maister, James Tomkins and John Coates.
Tonga’s delegates Lord Sevele and Takitoa Taumoepeau were involved in the elections process here as well.
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