Unity and solidarity were the themes of the 23rd OFC Ordinary Congress in Papua New Guinea today as the Confederation returned incumbent President David Chung to office for another four year term.
Papua New Guinea’s Chung, who has been OFC President since November 2011, was elected unopposed to take the reins of OFC for another four years.
In the presence of representatives from FIFA and local Papua New Guinea media the OFC Executive Committee was also elected with representatives from Cook Islands, Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, American Samoa and Vanuatu all earning their place on the committee.
Chung was both ecstatic and humbled to receive the endorsement of his peers for a second term in office and thanked them for their continued support.
“The next four years will be an exciting period for the OFC and I am sincerely thankful to the Member Associations of OFC for putting your trust in me as your OFC President,” he said during his acceptance speech.
“I would like to take the time to congratulate those members elected to the OFC Executive Committee and I look forward to working with you in this next term and will rely on your expertise and experience to help guide OFC in the right direction.”
He also acknowledged the continued support of the FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter and the FIFA Secretariat in helping OFC make grounds in developing the game throughout the region courtesy of the various FIFA Development initiatives provided over the past four years.
Chung noted that while some Member Associations are not officially represented on the Executive Committee, he is committed to running a transparent organisation and therefore invites those non-elected members to attend meetings as observers.
“We need to be united, transparent and make collective decisions for the good of OFC,” he says.
“You must know that OFC is not an independent organisation, it belongs to you the members and our vision for the next four years is for the benefit of the members and you our stakeholders; your clubs, players, coaches, referees and administrators.”
Working on his vision for the next four years, Chung outlined three points which his administration will focus on.
“We will continue to grow the game through Development Programmes and to popularise football in the region through television, radio and new competitions, continue to create pathways for our elite players and teams and strive to create revenue and become financially sustainable so we can reinvest in growing the game and creating pathways for our elite players and teams.”
The 53-year-old also outlined the proposals to aid Oceania on the international stage stating his continued work with the FIFA President on gaining direct entry for OFC to the FIFA World Cup™ and FIFA Club World Cup, a second seat on the FIFA Executive Committee and the provision of further financial assistance and programmes for OFC Member Associations in support of elite academies, Centres of Excellence, mentoring of coaches and the cost of participating on Oceania qualifiers for FIFA U-17 and U-20 events.
“I will need your support to lead our Confederation and enable us to grow the game, create pathways for our elite and generate income to make us financially sustainable and create wealth to distribute to our Member Associations and reinvest back in football in each country,” Chung concluded.
With his re-election as President, David Chung also becomes a FIFA Vice-President with immediate effect. He will be officially presented to the Congress of FIFA on the 1st of June.
The OFC Executive Committee sees just one new member join the newly elected group. American Samoa’s Iuli Alex Godinet makes up the committee alongside Lee Harmon (COK), Lord Ve’ehala (TGA), Rajesh Patel (FIJ), Laupama Solomona (SAM), Barnabas Anga (SOL) and Lambert Maltock (VAN).
Other matters addressed during the OFC Congress saw the unanimous endorsement of the 11 Point Plan to Combat Match Fixing, which was adopted by the Executive Committee in November 2014.
A resolution unanimously supporting FIFA President Joseph S Blatter in his bid for re-election was supported by a letter signed by all 11 OFC Member Associations.
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