June 15, 2017
The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Executive Board has unanimously decided to award the hosting rights for the 2019 IWF Junior World Championships to Weightlifting Fiji and the city of Suva.
Fiji’s bid was presented to the full Executive Board by Atma Maharaj, President of the Weightlifting Fiji and His Excellency, Mr Isikeli Mataitoga, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Fiji to Japan.
They were ably supported by Ms. Kelera Savu, the Second Secretary, at the Fiji Embassy in Tokyo.
The Ambassador briefed the meeting about the very strong support from the Government for sports in Fiji and in particular for Weightlifting and for Fiji’s Bid to host the Junior World Championships.
He presented the letter of support from the Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Laisenia Tuitubou to the meeting.
The IWF President and Secretary-General spoke enthusiastically about their warm welcome and the high quality of the Continental Qualification event for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games which Fiji hosted.
This helped the newly elected Executive Board to gain confidence in Fiji’s ability to host this World event.
Mr. Maharaj advised the meeting that Dr. Robin Mitchell, ONOC President and Patron of Weightlifting Fiji has agreed to take the position of Organizing Committee Chair.
This demonstrated the caliber of our organizing Team and added to the level of confidence for the Executive Board Members.
This is the first time since 1993 Melbourne Championships in Australia that a country from the Oceania region and first time ever for a Pacific Island to organize an IWF World Championships.
The dates of the Championships will be confirmed by the IWF in the next few weeks.
The Championships in 2019 will see around 500 Athletes and Team Officials from more than 50 countries taking part.
Together with the IWF Executive Board and Committees, Technical Officials, parents and supporters, this number is expected to exceed 700.
By Reginald Chandar