Saada receives IOC trophy in New York

It was an evening of pride for Oman's Saada al Ismaili as she was among the six women awarded by the IOC for being role models and change-makers in advancing women and girls in and through sport at the United Nations headquarters in New York, US, on Tuesday.

The awards ceremony was held on the sidelines of the IOC’s Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) meeting and attended by IOC president Thomas Bach and UN Women executive director and UN under-secretary general Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

Saada, who is an Oman Olympic Committee (OOC) board member and vice-chairwoman of Oman Women Sports Committee was handed a trophy of the 2019 Women and Sport Award for Asia. She was one of the five recipients of the continental trophies with the World Trophy presented to Chinese Taipei's Po Chun Liu.

In her remarks to Muscat Daily, Saada said, “I am very happy as it is an acknowledgement of my long services to women sports in Oman. 

“I have been working hard for the development of women sports for the past 25 years. It is a matter of pride to receive the honour at the UN headquarters from the IOC.”

Saada's citation read 'a leading activist for women’s sport in the Gulf region and the Arab world. She has successfully designed and efficiently implemented plans and programmes aimed at promoting girls’ and women’s sport throughout the regions and governorates of the sultanate.'

The other continental winners were Vanuatu Volleyball Federation (Oceania), Croatia's Morana Palikovic Gruden (Europe), Costa Rican NOC's Women and Sport Commission (Americas) and Togo's Djatougbe 'Nathalie' Noameshie (Africa).

IOC President Thomas Bach congratulated the winners on their achievements and said, “The Women and Sport Awards are very important because these personalities we are honouring have shown what can be achieved by empowering women and girls through sport. 

“The awardees bring about change not only on the field of play, but also in the workplace, at home, in schools and in other areas of society. Supporting such champions for women’s empowerment is essential in our overall commitment to gender equality.”

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