By John Tuerijama
ABNER ‘Big Daddy’ Xoagub is seeking to be re-elected as president of the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC).
The congress of the NNOC takes place in Windhoek on November 24 and Xoagub, who formerly also served as the body’s Secretary General, is yet the only person who has publicly expressed the desire to compete for the plum position.
Apart from the presidency, all the other executive committee positions will also be up for grabs. The NNOC is the body tasked to ensure Namibia’s participation at the quadrennial Olympic Games as well as the Youth Olympic Games which also take place every four years.
Xoagub took over as NNOC president in December 2015, having been elected unopposed by the body’s General Assembly.
He held the position of NNOC vice president since January 2013 but took over as the acting president of the National Olympic Committee following the resignation of Agnes Tjongarero in March.
Tjongarero left the NNOC after her appointment as Deputy Minister for Sport, Youth and National Service.
Despite being confirmed as Tjongarero’s replacement, Xoagub’s position is due for contestation in line with the Olympic cycle which requires that Olympic organisations hold elective assemblies every four years, which is the year in which the Summer Olympic Games are held.
Xoagub, who previously also served as Namibia Boxing Federation (NBF) Secretary General, said he was seeking re-election to finish his mission. “I am going to stand for re-election in order to complete what I started,” he said.
When asked about the primary reasons why he decided to avail himself for another four-year term, Xoagub said he wants to see the NNOC members (sport federations) benefit maximally from the opportunities offered by the body.
“There are lot of opportunities that the federations do not make use of such as the Olympic Solidarity programme. Athletes barely benefit from such programmes that are solely designed to assist them in many respects.”
His other target is to have a fully functional athlete identification programme that has to be up and running as Namibia starts to gear up for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, 2019 All Africa Games and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
If re-elected, Xoagub said he will also ensure that clear cut qualification criteria are established, especially for codes such as athletics and boxing, among others.
Someone who will be hoping for a positive outcome of the NNOC’s General Assembly is the current secretary general, Joan Smit.
The NNOC executive committee, once elected, will have to appoint a new secretary general, or confirm Smit into the position for another four-year term. She confirmed her willingness to continue working for the Olympics body, if she is given the nod.
Long-serving Olympic committee member, Ndeulipula Hamutumwa has however decided to call it a day. He confirmed that he will not be seeking to retain his position on the NNOC’s executive committee next week.
“I feel that I have done my contribution for the past 12 years. It is now time to give room to new people to come in,” he said.
Among Hamutumwa’s successes is the establishment of strong corporate governance structures and improving the NNOC’s financial situation.
“I was also involved in the review of the qualifications and participation criteria and I also led the Namibian team that competed at the inaugural Youth Games held in Singapore in 2010. On top of that, I was the chef de mission of Team Namibia to the 2012 London Olympic Games while I assisted in the transformation of junior athletes into recognised senior athletes who represented Namibia with pride,” enthused Hamutumwa.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015