It was certainly a Wolmer's reunion when Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce came to the JOA's Commonwealth Manor at the very "vibes" Edgbaston Hotel and Conference Centre in Birmingham where the Commonwealth Games is taking place. 

JOA President, Christopher Samuda, and JOA Secretary General/CEO, Ryan Foster, who both hail from the prominent Marescaux Road educational institution, Wolmer's Boys' School, welcomed their "sistren' Shelly-Ann, who attended Wolmer's Girls' School, and was on a doctor's visit to Birmingham. 

The Commonwealth Manor in Birmingham is the second edition of the current administration of the JOA, the first having been held at the snazzy and popular Helm Bar in the Gold Coast, Australia, where the 2018 Games took place. 

Shelly-Ann said "yes this is Wolmer's" in an evident show of scholastic camaraderie as she identified with the governors of JOA. 

Samuda, in embracing the collegiate and national spirit, stated: "We are Wolmerians, the maroon and gold champions, and black, green and gold patriots" while Foster, inspired by the enviable history of his alma mater, was moved to say "changemakers and innovators we are and servant leaders we will always be"

 

 

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) will, next month, launch its Olympic Coaches' Scholarships as the local governing body for Olympic sports continues its drive in making more professional the delivery of sports, especially the international games which fall under its remit.

Those games include the Summer and Winter Senior and Youth Olympic Games, the Pan American Games, the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games, the Commonwealth Games and beach games staged by regional and world governing bodies.

Enabling and empowering stakeholders remains the primary focus of the JOA which in 2019 created history when it inaugurated its own athletes' scholarships valued at over $JMD 6,000,000.00 to match scholarships, under the aegis of the Olympic Solidarity Programme of the International Olympic Committee (IOC),  are granted to athletes selected by the JOA.

"We've always been a co-partner with our coaches who are the custodians of talent and in acknowledging that fact, the JOA is making another solid and scholarly investment in our human and technical capital in sport," JOA President Christopher Samuda said.

Applicants responding to the call will formally submit their credentials in a pre-determined format and those who are shortlisted will then go through a very practical interview process governed by an expert panel assembled by the apex body, which will determine the successful beneficiaries.

JOA Secretary General and CEO, Ryan Foster, who will manage the process, outlined the value of the scholarships and more importantly the values which the JOA will be promoting, as the benefactor, through this grant.

"It's more than the $2,000,000.00 dollars that each recipient will receive to assist them in educational and career pursuits and to defray expenses incurred in relation to the preparation of their athletes and certain personal expenses, for it will be an experience in the lessons of Olympism in which they will learn  the value of self-management and mastery, goal setting and achievement and ethics and business of sport," Foster explained.

A welcomed opportunity for Jamaica's coaches, the continued grant of the scholarships by the JOA will fill a void locally and "give our coaches a new lease on their sporting lives and signal to them that the JOA is on the frontline with them and their athletes in creating success" Foster further stated.

This initiative comes on the heels of the Olympic Coaches Reward which the JOA initiated at the Tokyo Olympic Games which saw the governing body rewarding coaches of successful medalists to the tune of JMD$5,000,000.00.

Sport development calls for structured strategic management of human resources and a viable infrastructure of which coaches are essential.

"Our coaches are foundational, the cornerstone of the sports architecture and therefore the JOA is building capacity and deepening the pool of competencies while giving them assistance in dealing with certain domestic obligations of life," Samuda remarked.

The JOA Olympic Coaches Scholarships will also provide opportunities for coaches selected to collaborate with global colleagues in the transfer of knowledge in master classes.

The Jamaica Lacrosse Association (JLA) continues to create milestones and recently, its national team became the first team to qualify for the 2023 World Championships which will be held in San Diego, California.

In securing this achievement, the Jamaican sport ambassadors scored victories over Columbia 7 - 2 and the US Virgin Islands 5 - 4 and now stand a real chance of topping the table in the competition currently underway in Medellin, Colombia.

In commending JLA President, Calbert Hutchinson and the team, Jamaica Olympic Association President Christopher Samuda stated that "our member association continues to personify merit in sport and is inspiring its players to go beyond the call of duty in the national colors which is the essence of patriotism and a compelling attribute which all sportsmen and women should have."

The sport of Lacrosse locally is quickly gaining ascendancy which mirrors its growing popularity globally and is providing many opportunities for our youth engaged in competitive sport.

"A primary focus of the JOA is to broaden the options in sport for our youth and create as many opportunities for them to excel on the field of play in self-actualising while motivating them to earn a value-based education that will be their pension after sport. Lacrosse is raising the bar impressively and is taking ownership and passing the shuttle and not the buck'" Secretary General/CEO, Ryan Foster said.

The sport was contested at the Summer Olympics Games in 1904 and 1908 and played as an exhibition sport in 1928, 1932 and 1948 and the JOA supports the growing advocacy to have the sport make a long-awaited re-appearance in 2028 in Los Angeles.

"The calls for the sport's rebirth in Los Angeles are resonating and fittingly so after being absent for almost a century. If the echoes of history don't compel it, then the voices of the present will" President Samuda said.

President of the Jamaica Olympic Association, Christopher Samuda, issued a statement congratulating the Reggae Girlz on their qualification for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Tuesday.

The Girlz defeated Haiti 4-0 in Mexico on Monday to secure their second consecutive World Cup berth.

“With victory over Haiti, the journey now begins for our Reggae Girlz and as we did on the previous occasion the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) will be on the voyage, down under, with the team of our member association the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF),” Samuda said in the statement.

“History has repeated itself and the JOA commends the Girlz for writing, yet again, another admirable chapter in what we know will be a bestseller in football. Well done Girlz. The fraternity of sport applauds you and the Olympic Movement thanks you for giving our youth, particularly our young girls, invaluable lessons in courage, determination and inspiration,” he added.

 

 

Competitive boxing will return to the local sporting landscape with an event dubbed 'Fight Night on Olympic Way' scheduled for this Saturday at 7:00 pm when the Sugar Knockout Boxing Gym will come alive at the Cling Cling Oval in Olympic Gardens. 

The well-stocked fight card includes amateurs, females, and a professional match-up.  

The Sugar Knockout Gym was also launched at its newest location - the Cling Cling football Oval, home of former Reggae Boy, Ian Pepe Goodison, who is president of the football club and supported the boxing gym taking up residency on the top floor of the clubhouse. 

former boxer Lindel Wallace started the gym in 2008 as a way to give back to the young people in his community. 

"I was a boxer.  I trained at Tinson Pen first then Archmore, then I left from Archmore to go to Liberty Hall on King Street, then I left from Liberty Hall when Liberty Hall was destroyed and went to Race Course at Guinness Gym. Boxing is my life and what I love," Wallace said. 

“Well, I boxed for a couple of years before turning professional.  I love boxing so much that when I was done with it, I said I have to really turn into a coach. The first guys that I trained were (Khamal) Russell, (Dwayne) Rose, and Chad Richards.  Russell came out as a champion.  Chad Richards came out as a champion," he added. 

Regarding the gym's current location, Wallace said, "I feel good about it because for a long time I was asking for a place to call home and now I have it.  I need to improve more with my fighters."  He also said that Digicel, UK-based Jamaican Shania Gordon, and the Jamaica Boxing Association provided financial support to upgrade the gym and equipment to stock it. 

Vice President of the gym Felipe Sanchez spoke about the impact he wants the gym to have on the community.

"I have been involved in boxing in Jamaica for over four years. In total, boxing has been a part of my life for over fifteen years, and coming here to the boxing gym in Suga's Knockout Gym, it’s been wonderful to see the sense of community that has been built,” Sanchez said. 

“The youth has built a sense of pride.  We don't just teach them boxing; we teach them responsibility, so for me to see them grow as persons it brings me a lot of pride. For example, we have a club captain weekly who has to make sure that the gym is clean, the lights are turned off, the water is not running, and that the gloves are all accounted for, so this will help them at the end of the day because if boxing doesn't go well, you have to fall back on something else and the perfect transferable skills that you get from boxing can help you. We want to make champions in the ring and also in life," he added.

President of the Jamaica Boxing Association Stephen ‘Bomber’ Jones also shared his thoughts on the developments.

"I am very, very pleased.  Very excited.  We are encouraged by what I saw today, by what we knew would be coming, and by what we know to be coming Saturday,” he said.

“The return of the sport has been long overdue but everything in its time.  What I like most is that the card represents all levels, from the grassroots level to our elite national representative to a pro fight on the same night so the community will see boxing at a very high level.  Most importantly is the return to the sport so this is not a one-off," Jones added. 

He said that the fight card includes eight amateur bouts inclusive of one female matchup, and one pro bout between Jamaica's Headley 'Lights Out' Scott and Mexico's Israel Rojas.  Two of the boxers, one male and one female will come in from the recently launched Top Level Gym in Montego Bay.

Two of the boxers, on the Card,  Jerone Ennis, and Daniel Hylton, will represent Jamaica in the upcoming Commonwealth Games. 

"Going to the Commonwealth Games, this fight is very important to me,” said Ennis.

“This fight will basically be a prep fight.  Not expecting any competition but I have been training hard.  Just come and expect a lot of fireworks from Jerone Ennis," he added. 

 The Mayor of Kingston, His Worship Delroy Williams, Major Jenekie Rowe - boxing officer at the Jamaica Defence Force, and Christopher Samuda - President of the Jamaica Olympic Association attended the launch and endorsed the event. 

"It all started with Lindel.  He has blazed a trail and he has created champions and achievers out of our young people,” Samuda said.

“We believe that young people must have options.  Not everybody is an athlete, not everybody is a footballer or cricketer so we must give our young people options and boxing is a sport that provides a lot of opportunities," he added. 

The Amateur matchups are:

Howard Levy (80 lbs, 10 yrs) vs Alex Grant (90 lbs, 13 yrs)

Tyreek Jackson (112 lbs, 16 yrs) vs Akeem Mignot (120 lbs, 24 yrs)

Damara Bowen (120 lbs, 18 yrs) vs Sharikee Moore (124 lbs, 20 yrs)

Juezier Heron (140 lbs, 23 yrs) vs Daniel Hylton (145 lbs, 22 yrs)

Shaine Blake (156 lbs, 28 yrs) vs Mickel Bernard (155 lbs, 33 yrs)

Renaldo Beckford (175 lbs, 24 yrs) vs Jerone Ennis (175 lbs, 27 yrs)

Kirk Patrick Heron (170 lbs, 26 yrs) vs Tomere Pearson (168 lbs, 25 yrs)

Jordan Blackwood (215 lbs, 16 yrs) vs Alex Walch (210 lbs, 31 yrs)

 

 

 

 

 

 

   JOA INVESTS IN THE FUTURE DEVELOPMENT OF JAMAICA’S TRIATHLETES

 

Kingston, Jamaica…The Jamaica Triathlon Association (JTA) received a welcome boost recently when they were able to acquire eight new `bicycles with the help of the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA).

Through a JOA grant of JMD$1 million the JTA was able to acquire the bicycles and other equipment as well as assist with the promotion of the inaugural Inter-Schools Triathlon/Aquathlon Championships to be held at the National Aquatic Centre at Independence Park in Kingston on Saturday, June 18, 2022.

The championships will include age groups from six to 21 years incorporating primary, secondary and tertiary students.

Christopher Samuda, President of the JOA, said the investment is a further signal of the Olympic association’s confidence in the goals set by the JTA’s administration. 

“Our investment in the sport triathlon is three fold - the athlete, the tool of the trade, which is the bicycle, and the coach, who provides the technical competence which transitions the talent to success,” President Samuda said.

“This is JOA's cycle of development, the returns of which have been fast tracked by the experience and commitment of the new administration led by President Karl Sharpe.

“This is a solid partnership between the JOA and the Jamaica Triathlon Association, which has developed traction and the athlete is the winner and the schools the beneficiaries. One million is yet another clear signal of our confidence in the sport and the value and currency of the administration.”

JOA CEO and General-Secretary Ryan Foster believes the assistance they are providing will also help the JTA build capacity in the longer term.

“The JOA welcomes this extremely important initiative by the Jamaica Triathlon Association. The JOA shares a similar vision with the JTA regarding expanding opportunities and growing the sport in schools,” Foster said.

“We are pleased with the renewed energy displayed by President (Carl) Sharpe and his team and saw it as a right strategic fit which aligns with our vision of looking at the next generation.

“The partnership will see The JOA contributing $JMD1 million towards this competition. The sponsorship will also see the JOA providing the much-needed competition equipment, especially for those schools that do not have the resources to do so. This equipment will provide capacity to the JTA for future events."

 The consensus is that the JOA support will go a long way in helping develop the sport as well as aid in the physical development of young athletes, a view expressed by the association’s president Carl Sharpe.

“They (the bicycles) will help us to unearth talent,” he said.

Sharpe explained that several aquathlon athletes interested in becoming triathletes but they lack the resources to purchase bicycles.

He also believes that because the triathlon is a cross-discipline event, athletes who engage in the sport are likely to achieve greater levels of physical development and as a result are more likely to avoid injuries.

These sentiments were echoed by JTA Director Donna Sharpe.

“These bikes are starter bikes with different measurements that fit athletes with varying heights. The bikes will be used on a loaner basis to get athletes to start riding,” she explained.

“These are some aquathletes who want to transition to triathlon but have no bikes to get started. So they will be used to assist athletes to learn to ride and or train.”

At the inaugural championships, the JTA coaches are hoping to identify talent for the national squad in preparation for the Carifta Triathlon Aquathlon Age Group Championships scheduled to be held September 24th to 25th in Bermuda.

                                        -30-

The Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay arrived in Jamaica on Friday, April 15, reaching the 51st destination out of the 72 Commonwealth nations and territories it will be visiting.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is a Games tradition that celebrates, connects and excites communities from across the Commonwealth during the build up to the Games.

Birmingham 2022 is staging the 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay – an epic journey across the Commonwealth, with The Queen’s Baton visiting all 72 nations and territories, reaching Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean and the Americas.

Arriving from Caymans Islands, the Baton has officially touched down at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston.

The Queen’s Baton, which carries a message from Her Majesty the Queen, arrived in Jamaica as part of its journey to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, which will be held in England from July 28 until 8 August 2022.

It will be in Jamaica for three days and during it’s time here, it will be carried by baton bearers, including current and legacy athletes, and will visit landmarks such as the Usain Bolt Track, Emancipation Park and the Donald Quarrie High School.

"Jamaica welcomes the Queen's Baton which symbolizes the spirit of goodwill and brotherhood among Commonwealth nations and as we look towards Birmingham our people will embrace the rich experience of being a part of the Queen's Baton Relay," said the President of the Jamaica Olympic Association Christopher Samuda.

The Queen’s Baton will be carried by various sporting federations such as Track and Field, Cycling, Para-taekwondo and the legend Mr Donald Quarrie, CD, who is a Jamaican former track and field athlete, one of the world's top sprinters during the 1970s.

Below is the schedule for the Queen's Baton:

The Queen’s Baton Relay activities in Jamaica include:
● Baton Receival Ceremony at the Norman Manley International Airport on Friday,
April 15, 2022 @ 7:00P.M.
● Baton Presentation Ceremony at the UWI Regional Headquarters on Saturday,
April 16, 2022 @ 8:30 am
● A mock relay at the Usain Bolt Track on Saturday, April 16, 2022, 10:30 am
● University of Technology to mark the partnership between the UTECH and the
The University of Birmingham on Saturday, April 17, 2022, @ 12:00 p.m.
● The Emancipation Park on Saturday, April 16, 2022 @ 1:00 p.m.
● Netball House Ceremony on Saturday, April 16, 2022, @ 2:00 p.m.
● Spanish Town Cathedral Church Service on Sunday, April 17, 2022, @ 8:30 a.m.
● Donald Quarrie High School on Sunday, April 17, 2022, @ 11:00 am.
● Ceremony with the Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard in Port Royal on Sunday,
April 17, 2022 @ 12:30 p.m.
Since its inaugural appearance at the Cardiff 1958 Commonwealth Games, the Queen’s
Baton Relay has been a tradition for the Commonwealth Games.
The Relay started at Buckingham Palace on 7 October 2021, when Her Majesty The Queen
placed her Message to the Commonwealth into the Baton and passed it to four-time
Paralympic gold medallist and Team England athlete Kadeena Cox, who had the honour of
being the first of thousands of Baton bearers to carry the Baton through the Commonwealth.
The 16th official Queen’s Baton Relay is an epic journey covering the entirety of the
Commonwealth as it will travel to all 72 nations and territories, covering a distance of 140,000
kilometres. For 269 days, the Baton will travel to Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Caribbean
and the Americas, before it embarks on the final stretch of its journey across England for 25
days.
The Queen’s Baton Relay will complete its journey at the Opening Ceremony of the
Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on 28 July 2022. This is a traditional and
fundamental part of the Games and the Opening Ceremony, as the final Baton bearer will
pass the Baton back to The Queen. The Queen’s message to the Commonwealth will then be
removed from the Baton and read aloud, marking the official start of the Birmingham 2022
Commonwealth Games.

Jamaica Olympic Association President Christopher Samuda hopes Jamaica can compete in football at the Olympics one day.

“The Olympic Association understands that our role in sport is not only to change the game which we’re already in, but to transform it and to have, in certain respects, a renaissance so that generations can experience what ought to be the sport,” Samuda said while speaking at the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) Awards and Presentation ceremony at the JFF headquarters on Tuesday.

“We look forward to, as we have discussed continuously, the birth of football on the Olympic stage. It can be done. It will be done and we have every conviction at the JOA that the day will come. Footballers and coaches, you have a responsibility to ensure that it happens,” he added.

Despite Jamaica’s rich history in the Olympics, mainly in Track and Field, the country has never competed in football at the event.

Mexico has historically been the most successful CONCACAF nation in Olympic football winning a gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics and bronze at the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Jamaica’s chance to qualify for football at the 2024 Paris Olympics will come in June this year when they take part in the 2022 CONCACAF Under-20 Championship in Honduras.

 

It is an open secret that the present administration of the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) is creating "heat waves" in winter sports as it fulfils one of its mandates of growing and strengthening Jamaica's representation in the Winter Olympic Games with a competitive edge.

Although without a medal for the last eight winter games, JOA President, Christopher Samuda, is still confident that "with the robust development programme on which the JOA has embarked with a view to broadening the menu of sports and deepening representation particularly among the next generation of youth, podium success is in the foreseeable future."

The expansive initiatives of the local governing body for winter sports demonstrate a commitment that has been ongoing. Since 2018, guided by its mantra "Sport for All, and All for Sport" which is also its rallying cry for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games and the 2026 Milano Cortina Winter Games, the JOA has invested significantly in the sport of bobsled in motivating the dreams and aspirations of Jamaica's athletes in achieving a historic top of the podium finishing.

An elated JOA Secretary-General and CEO, Ryan Foster, stated that "the JOA is extremely pleased with the results having invested over $12,000,000.00 since 2018 in our bobsled athletes in assisting them in their travel, training camps and accommodation and in facilitating their qualification.

Three athletes were selected by the JOA who benefited from Olympic Solidarity scholarships amounting to over $10,000,000.00 the funds of which were used to help the athletes in their day-to-day preparation to include nutritional support. Without the scholarship programme, many athletes would not be able to afford the expenses of their daily preparation for the games."

Sports require investment in human capital and JOA's policy has been unqualified. "Investment in winter is an investment for all seasons of sport as the JOA's philosophy and culture in so far as the development of sport and inspiring our youth are concerned, whether in competitive and recreational endeavours, is timeless, non-discriminatory and with the conviction that performances will become legendary," Samuda stated.

The qualification of teams in this year's winter Games – the men's four and two-way teams and in the women's monobob - and Benjamin Alexander in alpine skiing has earned congratulations from the ruling body.

In a recognition of the accomplishments, Foster stated "the JOA pays tribute and wishes all our athletes tremendous success in the upcoming games. Our gratitude to the management team led by Fitzgerald Mitchell, Chef de Mission, and Dr Wayne Palmer, sports leader and well-known and respected orthopaedic surgeon and the delegation's Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and Covid Liaison Officer (CLO), who no doubt will successfully navigate the landscape in China."

Meanwhile, Samuda in endorsing those sentiments remarked: "The accomplishment of our athletes is testament to the inspiration and commitment that has and continues to drive aspirations and dreams for themselves and their country on the ice and we are hopeful that a medal will be on the Beijing menu."

Italy will be the next destination for the winter games and already the JOA is visioning history in the making as it embarks upon a programme it has described as "The Italian Ice-Breaker” and awaits destiny.

History will be made at 2023 Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games scheduled to take place in San Salvador where the sport of netball will be contested for the very first time, thanks to the advocacy of the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA).

"Netball got, deservedly, our approval to take a seat at the regional table and with this accomplishment, the journey now begins to globalize the sport and the JOA stands ready to again play a signal role," said JOA President Christopher Samuda.

Samuda is a member of the Executive Board of Centro Caribe Sports which owns the games.

An established sport in English-speaking regional territories and now a staple on the sporting agenda of several Spanish-speaking countries, Secretary-General and CEO of the Jamaica Olympic Association, Ryan Foster, was never in doubt that the sport would transition.

 "I have the privilege of sitting on the Technical Commission of Centro Caribe Sports and from the get-go, I inked my finger and campaigned for netball for I was confident that the sport's credentials would result in a landslide victory," he said.

As the number of Olympic sports on the agenda for multi-sport games increases, the need for a non-Olympic sport to ensure that it is "first to market" becomes increasingly critical for entry to such events as the CAC Games.

 "Insofar as netball is concerned, we at the JOA understood that in order to become a resident of the household of multi-sport games of the Olympic movement, the sport had to muscle its way to first in the line and present, persuasively, credentials for occupancy,” Samuda explained.

Jamaica’s netball pedigree is well known and in the run-up to the 2023 San Salvador CAC Games, the JOA and Netball Jamaica in partnership with Centro Caribe Sports, will be hosting educational workshops and training sessions for teams from Spanish-speaking countries with a view to enhancing their skill sets and technical competencies in the sport.

"What is the value of knowledge and expertise if they're not shared in creating greater capital and opportunities for others in the sporting fraternity?" JOA Secretary-General and CEO Foster queried.

With the withdrawal of Panama City as host of the games, the Executive Board of Centro Caribe Sports moved quickly to re-start the bidding process to secure an alternative host and recently formalized the contract with the Government of the Republic of El Salvador, the municipality of San Salvador and the Local Organizing Committee.

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) and the Guatemalan Olympic Committee (GOC) recently signed a historic Sports Co-operation Agreement that will see both bodies cooperating in the areas of applied sport sciences, sports medicine, technology, Olympic values, anti-doping, community and recreational sport, as well as sports administration.

The agreement will also facilitate the exchange of athletes and coaches who will benefit from educational and technical programmes.

The agreement was signed during the XXV General Assembly of the Association of National Olympic Committee (ANOC) in Greece.

JOA President Christopher Samuda declared that the signing of the agreement signifies an abiding commitment from the JOA and GOC to deepen their already strong bi-lateral relationship under which athletes, coaches, administrators and member federations will benefit from initiatives of capacity building and institutional strengthening, in research, training and education, sports-specific skills and the sciences and technology of sport.

President of the Guatemalan Olympic Committee, Gerardo Aguirre, also endorsed the historic partnership in regional sporting history.

"For us, Guatemala's NOC, we identified this as an opportunity to generate a connection with sport and athletes between Jamaica and Guatemala,” he said.

“Jamaica has specific strengths in sport and Guatemala has developed others, making these useful for us all to share. Therefore, this makes the signing of this agreement a marvellous opportunity and from it can come various avenues of activities so that Jamaican and Guatemalan athletes can come together."

Secretary-General and CEO of the Jamaica Olympic Association, Ryan Foster, who announced the agreement between the two Olympic organizations, explained that both Olympic bodies understand that efforts and relationships in sport must first be athlete-centric and dedicated.

 “Then, for stakeholders' engagement and empowerment and this agreement which we have signed is written testimony of that fact and the reality that friendships and unity in sport defy language barriers and the breadth of seas and oceans," he said.

Director of International Affairs of the Guatemalan Olympic Committee, Neville Steins, emphasized the importance and high value of the agreement in the context of bringing “not only our countries together through sport, but more still, bringing together the Caribbean and Central America in eliminating the absence of communication owing to language differences through the use of sport and thus bring our countries' athletes together for the common good."

The JOA's foreign policy supports strong and strategic partnerships in providing enabling opportunities for athletes, coaches and administrators.

 "The JOA will continue to build strong partnerships across borders and continents. We started in December 2017 when we inked in Japan with the Tottori Prefecture Government an agreement which is facilitating collaboration beyond the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games as for us sport development and diplomacy go beyond events and are life-changing experiences spanning generations. We will continue in earnest as sport is an enabler, equalizer and unifier" President Samuda said.

More Sports On Board for the Cali Junior Pan-American Games

The list of sports in which Jamaica will be represented at the first-ever Junior Pan-American Games in Cali, Colombia, continues to grow with the latest additions being Skateboarding, Squash and Archery.

President of the Jamaica Olympic Association, Christopher Samuda, describes the strong showing as "proof positive that the JOA's policy of equal opportunity, parity in investment and empowering the next-generation is encouraging and having results."

Representation now stands at a historic 12 sports, by far the largest number of sports that the local Olympic movement has ever had at a multi-sport regional or international games.

This fact has prompted President Samuda to say: "For us, at the JOA, strength lies in numbers, strength lies in a wealth of talent and strength lies in the conviction that today's real-time investment is tomorrow's history-making dividends."

Preparation for Cali is on in earnest and, for the Samuda-led administration, management of games generally has become a "business of sport" undertaking.

Commenting on the new approach, JOA Secretary-General and CEO, Ryan Foster, said: "Investing in and banking on the inflow of talent, increasing the numbers on the books,  creating opportunities for exponential growth and having a professional management team to  manage flow and outflow of games is our business at the JOA."

The positive response of the juniors augurs well for the future of the Olympic movement which is founded on the fundamental principles of inclusion and allowing each athlete the opportunity to transition to the international stage where, Secretary-General Foster stated, "history awaits those who had the discipline to train and the present will to succeed."

The Cali games will be held between November 25 and December 5 and "it will provide Jamaica's juniors and those of the America's opportunities to test their credentials for the 2023 Pan-American Games with the hope of graduating to the finale in 2024 in Paris" President Samuda stated.

The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange has said that every arriving athlete from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be greeted by her on arrival.

The Jamaica Football Federation has conveyed a message of congratulations to Christopher Samuda who was overwhelmingly returned as president of the Jamaica Olympic Association during an Extraordinary Annual General Meeting on Saturday.

The noted attorney will serve another four-year term after handsomely defeating challenger Alan Beckford 40-10 in the voting.

The significance of the vote of confidence was not lost on the JFF.

“The Jamaica Football Federation heartily congratulates Mr Christopher Samuda on his re-election as President of the Jamaica Olympic Association,” it said in a statement.

“The overwhelming support given to his re-election is an indication of the quality of leadership he has given, especially as he has extended the support of the JOA to many non-traditional sporting entities even whilst maintaining guidance to the traditional sports.

“The JFF has benefitted in many ways from his stewardship in particular in the recharging of professional football and overall guidance on other initiatives. We extend congratulations to the entire executive including our own Vice President Raymond Anderson and the first female 1st Vice- President of the JOA, Jacqueline Cowan. We look forward to forging an even stronger working relationship with the JOA going forward.”

Cowan of the Jamaica Volleyball Association defeated incumbent first Vice-President Nelson Stokes 29-11.

Robert Scott is the second vice-president after defeating Ian Forbes, 33-17.

Nichole Case was unopposed as treasurer.

The Jamaica Olympic Association and Jamaica’s Sports Minister Olivia Grange praised Veronica Campbell-Brown for her outstanding career as Jamaica’s decorated athlete.

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