May 15, 2009, 5:44 AM
Lamin Ceesay, president of the Gambia Deaf Sports Association, has reacted angrily to claims made by the GNOC acting-president Beatrice Allen that Deaf Sports does not have a voting right in the forthcoming presidential election of the Gambia National Olympic Committee.
The right for the Deaf Sports to vote in the upcoming GNOC presidential election continues to hang in the balance following some bitter arguments between the National Sports Council (NSC) and the GNOC at the National Assembly on Tuesday, with Beatrice claiming the Deaf Sports is not a registered Olympic sports and therefore it does not have the right to vote in the GNOC election.
Abdul Aziz Titao Mendy, executive secretary of the NSC, during Tuesday’s National Assembly meeting in Banjul disagreed with Beatrice’s claim and went on to defend the Deaf Sports Association’s right to vote as long as it had met the voting requirements.
Following The Point newspaper’s publication on the eligibility of the Deaf Sports Association for the controversial GNOC election, the president of the Gambia Deaf Sports Association, Lamin Ceesay, could not hide his dissatisfaction for what he referred to as unconstitutional omission of the association which, he said, is a recognised and registered sports association with the international body since 2007.
Ceesay, who walked into The Point offices with a bitter complaint, said the Gambia Deaf Sports Association has been admitted as a member of Deaf Olympics since 1st of February 2007 and is recognised by the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf much to the knowledge of the GNOC.
“A letter of approval,” Ceesay revealed, “was written to the Gambia Deaf Sports Association by the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (ICSD) on 12 March 2007 which indicates that the Gambia Deaf Sports Association is officially a member of the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf as of 1st February 2007.”
The letter signed by the executive director of the ICSD, Granfors Tiffany, reads: “Dear Gambia Deaf Sports Association, we are very much pleased to present you with a certificate of membership which officially confirmed
“We were sorry that you were unable to be present at the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf congress in
“We look forward to working with your association and for you to bring your delegates to our next International Committee of Sports for the Deaf congress alongside your athletes at our upcoming summer Deaflympics at Chinese Taipei in 2009.
“Welcome to the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf family.”
The ICSD is the world organisation responsible for all aspects of sports for deaf people with the mandate to award and govern the winter and summer Deaflympics and Deaf world championships and to develop and promote Deaf sports training and competitions in the Deaf international sporting community.
The Deaflympics, under the auspices of the ICSD, first competed in
It also receives official recognisation and patronage from the International Olympics Committee.