President of the National Paralympic Committee of Ghana President Samson Deen is in Bonn, Germany for the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) General Assembly.

Mr. Deen, president of the Ghana para powerlifting was elected in June this year and attending the gathering for the first since he was sworn into office with his other executives.

The gathering currently on going, has seen some countries such Kiribati, Maldives, Malta and Paraguay being granted full membership of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC).

The ratification of the four nations brings the IPC’s membership to 205, 182 of which are NPCs. Four African NPCs are currently suspended – Djibouti, Sudan, Comoros and Seychelles.

Kiribati becomes the ninth member nation from the Oceania region, while Maldives is the 44th NPC in Asia. Malta is the 48th European NPC to become part of the IPC, and Paraguay marks the 33rd from the Americas.

The Paraguay Paralympic Committee and the Maldives Paralympic Committee were made provisional members in July 2018 and May of this year, respectively. The General Assembly is the highest decision making body for Para Sports and has approved some key motions.

The IPC membership discussed and voted on several motions during the meeting.

Amongst those approved were:

• For the IPC to consider the feasibility of introducing translation of its official communications into other languages to help the inclusivity for its members.

• If needed, the Chairperson of the Athletes’ Council may also work on the basis of a service agreement and receive an appropriate remuneration or compensation.

• The Governing Board is responsible for the conclusion, content and termination of the contract with the President, Vice President or Chairperson of the Athletes’ Council with the respective holders of said roles not involved in the decisions.

• For the IPC to consider the introduction of post-nominal letters for athletes who have competed at a Paralympic Games as a symbolic recognition of their achievement and status in society.

• For IPC regional organisations to establish a regional membership fee, payment of which entitles members to participate fully in regional activities, with the condition that non-payment of the regional membership fee cannot be a reason for preventing an NPC’s athletes from participating in regional games or any other regional sport event.

• Technical revisions to the IPC Medical Code, to align with updates to the IOC Medical Code made in 2016.

• Amendments to the IPC Constitution. The IPC aims to hold an Extraordinary General Assembly in late 2020 to approve proposals that will be put forward as part of the organisation’s first Governance Review for 15 years.

Source: Coffie Okoto