The speech of Mr. Spyros Capralos to the HOC members right after he re elected President
I would like to thank you for my re-election as President of the Hellenic Olympic Committee. My feelings are mixed. On one hand, I am glad that you have recognized the work accomplished during the previous four years; on the other hand, I am very concerned about the future of Greek sport and the thankless role we will have as Olympic Committee for the following four years.
The new administration takes the helm of the Hellenic Olympic Committee an an extremely difficult time. Greek sport and sports federations due to dramatic cuts in state subsidy, face severe difficulty in surviving. And, without the Sports Federations, there is no elite sport, there is no participation in international events and therefore, no participation in the Olympics.
The State must examine every possible source of funding for sport. Especially in view of the forthcoming sale of OPAP, the state should endeavor to secure a percentage of the profits of OPAP from the new owner for the Olympic Committee, at least for the next four years.
Furthermore, the State must demonstrate its interest in sports with actions, looking into ways of funding avoiding bureaucracy. For example, the Romanian Olympic Committee receives a percentage from the taxes imposed on alcoholic beverages and cigarettes.
Moreover, the HOC should continue its efforts to deal with another problem, the redundant employees of Federations, by transferring Sports Federations to the Organizations of General Government. Thus, it would save money for the actual sport, while today, much is spent on fixed operating costs.
Furthermore, the HOC will continue its efforts, as it did during the previous four years, to claim and provide for our athletes money and subsidies from the International Olympic Committee. We will also try to realize the promise made by the IOC, to financially support the work of the HOC.
We will also continue our efforts in finding sponsors from the private sector in order to finance the activities of the HOC. On one hand, continuing efforts to spread the Olympic Education, which was successfully launched during the last four years with the activation of the National Olympic Academy, in order to contribute to the fight against modern scourges of sport and our society: violence, doping, obesity. We will also continue the work of the IOA, which opened its facilities in Ancient Olympia for both graduate and post graduate students and for a series of conferences in collaboration with major universities abroad.
On the other hand, we will strive to maintain the operation of all sports facilities, such as the Olympic Swimming Center at Zappeion. Its operation is extremely difficult due to the lack of resources, even if maintenance is kept to the minimum.
We will also claim vital spaces for sport in order to re-open the athletes’ guesthouses and the restaurant in the Olympic Stadium for our elite sport.
We will continue the successful efforts that were made at the Panathenaic Stadium since it reopened to the public, attracting over 250,000 visitors and thousands of children from primary schools from all around our country.
We must all stand united against the difficult days that have come for Greek sport. Let's leave behind petty politics and rivalries.
Let us all together fight and focus on how we can better help our athletes, who have to make a long struggle for the next four years with limited means and resources. Let us all work together help the athletes so that we may all feel proud when they manage to bring success to our country. We owe it to them and we owe it to ourselves.
|Ολυμπιακά Αθλήματα / Θερινοί Αγωνες|
|Ολυμπιακά Αθλήματα / Χειμερινοί Αγωνες|