Singapore National Olympic Council Elects Juliana Seow and Jessie Phua as VPs

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At a virtual annual general meeting (AGM) held 23 September, Fencing chief Juliana Seow and Bowling Federation chief Jessie Phua were elected vice-presidents of the Singapore National Olympic Council.

They will serve their term until 2024, alongside incumbent vice-presidents Benedict Tan and Milan Kwee, who were both elected at the 2018 AGM and will serve till 2022.

Saying goodbye to veteran official Tan Eng Liang

Phua was defending her seat, while Seow was running against former sepak takraw president Abdul Halim Kader for the seat vacated by Dr Tan Eng Liang.

Dr Tan stepped down after 28 years of service, who was commended by SNOC president Tan Chuan-Jin as a ā€œdedicated and selfless servant to sport in Singapore.ā€

ā€œ[Dr Tan] passionately cares about our sports and athletes, and he is irreplaceable for what he brings to the table. We thank him for the decades that he has poured into sport, and wish him a happy retirement,ā€ said Tan in his thank you speech to Dr Tan.

As Seow will be taking over Dr Tanā€™s seat, she feels the pressure to fill his shoes. ā€œI hope I can be as effective as Dr Tan, who has been a great role model. He can be tough and strict, but heā€™s also very caring and empathetic. Heā€™s a very hands-on person who always looks to find the root of the problem,ā€ she said.

Maintaining interest in sports amid COVID-19

The AGM was held via videoconference because of COVID-19 restrictions. In attendance were 225 representatives from 54 National Sports Associations (NSAs).

The new measures are just one of the many challenges ahead for NSAs. Phua reckons that the biggest challenge for NSAs now is maintaining interest in sports during these trying times.

ā€œItā€™s up to us how we can be more creative to keep the engagement there and to keep people enthused so that when the light at the end of the tunnel gets bigger and brighter, we can emerge and hit the ground running,ā€ she said.

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