"It is clear that as a region we are ambitious and committed to really grasping the opportunities that the next eight years present."
The 4th Asian Paralympic Committee (APC) General Assembly wrapped up on 29 November in Bangkok, Thailand, with the members voting overwhelmingly for a change in the APC constitution.
The amended constitution sees a change in the composition of the Board which will come into effect at the next Board elections in 2018.
The changes to the Board composition enable the General Assembly to elect more members of the Executive Board and clarify which groups will be represented on the Board.
IPC Vice President Andrew Parsons addressed the Assembly, outlining the importance of a strong Asian region for the Paralympic Movement given that the next three Games will take place there.
The General Assembly also received updates on the APC’s finances and approved the budget for the forthcoming year.
An overview of the APC activity over the past two years was also presented and the Organising Committees from the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games, Indonesia 2018 Asian Para Games and Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games gave presentations on their preparations.
APC President Majid Rashed said: “We took the decision to move the General Assemblies to bi-annually because we want to foster close relationships between our members, to share best practice and help to strengthen the Paralympic Movement in our region. We’ve had a very productive two days with much discussion and debate. It is clear that as a region we are ambitious and committed to really grasping the opportunities that the next eight years present. It has been a pleasure to meet with our colleagues and we all leave motivated for what the future will bring.”
More than 90 attendees from 33 of the region’s NPCs and observers from International Federations, the IPC and Regional Sports Organisations attended.
APC Awards winners
The APC also presented three recipients with the Asian Order and six winners with Asian Awards at a Gala dinner held during the General Assembly.
The Asian Paralympic Order was presented to Michael Barredo; the late Ms Fatemeh Haj Mir Fattah; and Ms Anyetty Chow Yeun Wan. The accolade is the highest order the APC can bestow and is awarded to any person who has illustrated the APC ideals through his or her actions, has demonstrated outstanding achievement in their sport, or has given outstanding and long-lasting services to the APC cause.
There were six categories for the Asian Paralympic Awards which were determined on outstanding performances at any competition since the last awards were presented in December 2014.
Chinese swimmer Xu Qing received Best Asian Male Athlete; Chinese wheelchair fencer Rong Jing was awarded Best Asian Female Athlete; the Iranian men’s sitting volleyball team was named Best Asian Team Performance; Indonesian swimmer Syuci Indriani received Best Asian Youth Athlete; South Korean swim coach Gwak Manjae earned the Exemplary Asian Official; and Iranian photographer Abofazl Amanollah was recognized for Best Photography.
Read more about each of the APC Awards winners at the APC’s website.