KUWAIT: Kuwaiti sports entered a new era late yesterday after the Kuwait Olympic Committee’s general assembly elected its new board, culminating a “roadmap” that was designated to resolve Kuwait’s sporting crisis. The assembly elected Sheikh Fahd Nasser Al-Sabah as Chairman; Mohammad Jaafar as Vice-Chairman; Hussein Al-Musallam as General Secretary; and Mubarak Faisal Al-Nawaf, Jaber Thamer Al-Ahmad, Ali Al-Merri, Nael Al-Awadhi, Musaed Al-Ajeel, and Saud Al-Harbi as members. They were unanimously elected as all 16 sports associations voted for the list of Sheikh Fahd.

The new Olympic committee president said the new board has a work plan and several goals to develop Kuwait sports, including signing cooperation protocols with state ministries including that of education, in addition to the Public Authority for Sport. He said the board will seek the establishment of an Olympic academy with international assistance.

Sheikh Fahd said Kuwaiti sport needs collective work without special considerations. He said the board seeks cooperation with PAS to establish Olympic academies in all the state’s governorates, including one for treating athletes. “We will strengthen our relations with international establishments and evaluate administrative work at the committee to achieve the best means to prepare and qualify athletes who can compete strongly at the international level,” he said.

The International Olympic Committee is expected to issue a decision very soon to permanently lift its ban on Kuwait. A representative of the IOC attended the KOC general assembly meeting, in addition to the six-member committee that worked on resolving the sport crisis in Kuwait.

By Abdellatif Sharaa