Just after the government asked for resignation from Pakistan Olympic Association’s (POA) president over Pakistan’s poor display in the Tokyo Olympics, the sports body has decided to put its case before Prime Minister Imran Khan.

According to a report published in a local newspaper, the POA has decided to write a letter to the prime minister and inform him of the responsibility of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) and how it has fulfilled its obligations so far.

It has been learnt that the NOC’s senior officials held an emergency virtual meeting late on Friday following the news conference held by the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Shahbaz Gill and the IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza during which the POA chief Lt Gen (retd) Arif Hasan was asked to step down immediately.

The POA plans to write to the premier that Pakistan’s contingent could not have featured in the Olympics had the NOC not sent the confirmed reservations details and activity plans of the athletes and officials to the organisers 30 days before the Games.

The POA will also inform the PM that the NOC is an autonomous body. The NOC has conducted its elections in a transparent way and its constitution has been approved by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

The PM will also be intimated that when an athlete is selected, it is the responsibility of the NOC to ensure his or her participation in events such as the Olympics by sending all his details to the organisers of the Games and managing accreditation cards and fulfilling all relevant obligations.

If an athlete fails to deliver, the federations and departments should be held accountable and not the NOC, the prime minister will be informed.

Meanwhile, the POA has also convened its general body meeting in order to discuss the situation that has emerged as a result of the government asking Arif to resign.

The POA also intends to seek a meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan. The POA intends to hold a news conference after Ashura in which it will respond to the questions about the points which were discussed during the news conference conducted by the government functionaries in Islamabad on Friday.

A source in the POA told The News that the NOC would also inform the IOC about the situation. “The IOC definitely knows what has emerged as international media covered Friday’s news conference and we will update them about the situation,” a POA source said.


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