ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination, Fehmida Mirza shared Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) has had remained more effective than the government.
In an exclusive interview in ARY News’s show Bouncer, the Minister said that the government and his ministry have no say in sports federation and POA’s matters.
“Not only this government, but all previous governments were ineffective in front of POA. I don’t have any say in federation and POA’s matters,” she shared.
“We were informed about Olympics participants at the very last moment. We didn’t know about their selection criteria and who got them accreditation for the event. We just received the list of participants and were told to make arrangements for their travel and accommodation,” she disclosed.
Fehmida said she was disappointed with the performance but such results were expected following the poor system. “I was equally disappointed with the results but nothing was unexpected. We all knew how these players were selected and how the system has failed to question the process,” she said.
“There is no way to question the Olympic committee. Till 1948, Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah was the Patron of the Olympic committee. After that, the President of Pakistan used to be the Patron of the Olympic Committee. But, in 2019, they removed this post and now they are not answerable to anyone from the government,” she pointed out.
Moreover, the federal minister highlighted that sports federations and the Olympic committee just want her to sign checks and release funds. “I am not a dummy character. I have told them that the funds will only be released for athletes. But, yet again it’s a matter of a weak system. I am trying to exercise governmental powers and not just signing checks for them which they actually want me to do,
“There is a need to implement a strong system. Prime Minister Imran Khan is concerned about sports and the plan is to enforce a proper sports system in the country,” she concluded.