The ONOC Athletes’ Commission (ONOC AC) conducted elections for their new executives Thursday.

Convened virtually and facilitated through an electronic voting system (Lumi Global), a total of seven candidates, nominated by six national athletes’ commissions contested the four positions available. The four positions were allocated equally to two male and two female candidates.

The nominated candidates contesting the four positions were:

*Ajah Pritchard-Lolo – Vanuatu Athletes’ Commission

*Kaino Thomsen-Fuataga – Samoa Athletes’ Commission

*Kayla Whitelock – New Zealand Athletes’ Commission

*Ken Wallace – Australia Athletes’ Commission

*Lua Rikis – Papua New Guinea Athletes’ Commission

*Matelita Buadromo – Fiji Athletes’ Commission

*Tutumanu Matautia – Samoa Athletes’ Commission

After two rounds of voting, observed by Presidents and Secretaries-General from a few National Olympic Committees in the region and ONOC staff, the following candidates were elected:

Photo: ONOC Media

Australia’s Ken Wallace who was interim chairperson of the ONOC AC for the last 10 months said he was grateful to be officially elected to the commission. “I look forward to working with the new members in building on the work of the previous executive to take the athletes’ movement in our region forward,” Wallace said.

Fiji’s Matelita Buadromo acknowledged the five female candidates for stepping up, and the responsibility now placed on her and the in-coming executives, in representing and being a voice for athletes of Oceania.

ONOC Secretary General Rick Blas congratulated the elected members saying that Thursday’s election was ten months in the making, part of which was to ensure that national Athletes’ Commissions were compliant with the election requirements. He thanked Ken Wallace and the interim ONOC AC leaders for their work in the last ten months as well as New Zealand’s Sarah Walker for facilitating the election process today.

The four executive members elected will join Sarah Walker (Deputy Chair of the IOC Athletes’ Commission and IOC Member), Papua New Guinea’s Ryan Pini (Pacific Games Council’s Athlete Representative) and Australia’s Jessica Fox (IOC Athletes’ Commission Member). All three members automatically get a seat on the ONOC AC Executive because of their roles with the IOC and the Pacific Games Council.

The ONOC AC executives are scheduled to meet next week to finalise their programmes and work plan for the next six months.