Congratulatory messages and accolades are coming in for ONOC President Robin Mitchell recognising his election as President of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) at the ANOC General Assembly in Seoul, Korea last month.
It was already evening in Suva, the end of a quiet workday in Mitchell’s city of residence in his homeland, Fiji – as quiet as the humble, unassuming medical doctor whom 97.25 percent of National Olympic Committees of the world had just voted in as their President; a position Mitchell had acted in since 2018.
Suva is also home of the headquarters of the Oceania National Olympic Committees (ONOC); the official home of all seventeen National Olympic Committees (NOCs) of Oceania.
Among the first to respond to President Mitchell’s achievement were ONOC Executives who had spent the earlier part of the week with Mitchell at a planning workshop for the ONOC Strategic Plan 2023 to 2025, a few of them members of the ANOC Executive Council, and all of them part of leadership of NOCs.
Sir John Dawanincura | President, Papua New Guinea Olympic Committee
Sir John Dawanincura, long-time Oceania sport leader and friend of President Mitchell, discusses the meaning of the ANOC Presidency to Oceania.
Takitoa Taumoepeau | Secretary-General, Tonga Association of Sport and National Olympic Committee (TASANOC)
Takitoa Taumoepeau, Secretary-General of TASANOC, the National Olympic Committee of Tonga, said; “President Mitchell’s achievement is a confirmation that through hard work and endeavour, we achieve what we aspire and dream to achieve in life regardless of our size, status, and ethnicity.”
Taumoepeau added; ‘This is also true in the sports field as we have witnessed with Tonga winning the Pacific Islands’ first Olympic medal through Paea Wofgramm’s silver at Atlanda 1996 for boxing; Samoan Women’s weightlifting athlete Ele Opeloge’s silver medal at Beijing 2008; and the Fiji Men’s Sevens Rugby teams’ Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 gold medals, and Fiji Women’s Rugby team’s bronze medal in Tokyo 2020.”
Hon. Marcus Stephen | President, Nauru National Olympic Committee
Hon. Marcus Stephen, ONOC Executive Member and President of the Nauru National Olympic Committee (NNOC), said; “I am absolutely happy for Dr Mitchell and my heartiest congratulations – this is a big honour for Dr Mitchell and Oceania, a very proud day for Oceania.”
“To witness this historic moment in person makes it all the more special for me.”
Auvita Rapilla | ONOC Executive and Secretary-General of the Papua New Guinea Olympic Committee (PNGOC)
Auvita Rapilla, Secretary-General of PNGOC, said; “For the region this is fantastic, with the Olympic family acknowledging the leadership and contribution that Oceania can bring to the Olympic Movement at the highest level through Dr Mitchell’s election as President – we are very proud of this achievement.”
“Congratulations President Mitchell on your election as ANOC President. Great recognition for your leadership, contribution, and unwavering dedication to the Olympic Movement. We look forward to working with you in this new role.”
James Tobin | Secretary-General, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) National Olympic Committee
James Tobin, Secretary-General of the FSM National Olympic Committee (FSMNOC), said; “This is recognition that Oceania has world class sport administrators and sport leaders.”
Ricardo Blas | Secretary-General, Oceania National Olympic Committees
Secretary-General Blas said, “This is a historic day for Oceania – a day where we get to see one of us elected to the Presidency of ANOC.”
‘This is a proud day for the Pacific, and especially for ONOC – President Mitchell has risen to one of the pinnacle positions of the Olympic Movement through this vote of confidence that the NOCs of the world have given him, and we are proud he is part of us.”
To get an Overview of ONOC at the ANOC General Assembly culminating in President Mitchell’s election success as ANOC President, please click on the following media releases which form a series:
Media Release 1: Oceania prepares for historic election of Mitchell as ANOC President
This article has been adapted from the ONOC website.