President of IOC visits Tonga

The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach has visited Tonga for a short visit to show solidarity after the devastation caused by the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Haapai volcanic eruption and tsunami

Bach and his delegation arrived by private jet utilising Tonga's Covid-19 protocols for short-term high-level visits (MIQ Zero).

Tonga's international borders are closed at the moment due to Covid-19.

The IOC President attended a function at the Tonga Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee (TASANOC) office which had limited attendees, before meeting the Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku Siaosi Sovaleni at his office in Nuku'alofa.

Bach said the purpose of the visit is to show solidarity to the Olympic community in Tonga and the people of Tonga after the natural disasters and help sports recovery.

During a tour of Tongatapu they visited some of the sports infrastructure affected by the natural disasters.

Bach said the IOCC wants to assist in rebuilding the sports infrastructure and help get the sports equipment washed away by the tsunami.

"We will talk and assess what kind of equipment is needed the most to continue in the sports activities and to allow athletes to prepare for their next competition," he said.

He also expressed great appreciation for TASANOC and the Olympic team of six Tongan athletes who overcame so many obstacles to get to the Olympics last year.


Photo IOC Media/Twitter  Caption: Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku (left) with the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach