Pakistan added another feather in its cap when Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) President Lt Gen (r) Syed Arif Hasan was re-elected as the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Vice President for South Asia (2019-2023) for the fourth time in a row at the General Assembly meeting of the OCA held in Thailand capital Bangkok on Saturday. Arif is one of the five Zonal Vice Presidents of OCA and has been elected unopposed for the South Asian Zone which comprises Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. It is under his dynamic leadership that the Olympic Movement of Pakistan has secured autonomy as envisaged in the Olympic Charter. The re-election of Arif as OCA Vice President is a big achievement for Pakistan. It will surely benefit the country in making its presence felt at the important international forum. The Government of Pakistan should not only engage Arif and the National Olympic Committee Pakistan in development of sports but also comprehend the potential of sports and use it in realization of a bright future of the country.The OCA is the apex sporting body which controls all the sports in Asia. It is one of the five continental associations recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The OCA was formed in 1982 and has its permanent headquarters in Kuwait. The main objective of the OCA is to develop sport, culture and education of Asian youth as well as to promote international respect, friendship, goodwill and peace through sport. It pertinent to mention that Arif was also conferred the highest award in Asia known as the OCA Merit Award last year in Jakarta, Indonesia in recognition of his services for the protection and promotion of the Olympic Movement at national and Asian arenas.Arif’s unopposed election to the post of Vice President, for the fourth term, speaks volumes of the trust that the OCA has in him. Arif has led the Olympic Movement of Pakistan with dedication and resolve for the cause of sports as is evident from his determined stance on a transparent and an all-inclusive system in national sports in line with the Olympic Charter. His commitments to the development of youth through sports and gender equality have always been his topmost priority. He has always advocated that sports must be utilised to develop the leadership qualities of youth and build a healthy, vibrant Pakistan through sports. Arif has expressed his gratitude to the entire Asian Olympic fraternity and in particular Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah who has also been unanimously re-elected as the President OCA. Sheikh Ahmad has been a great source of strength for the Olympic Movement in Pakistan. The POA is delighted at Sheikh Ahmad’s re-election and wishes him the very best for the future.Published in Daily Times, March 4th 2019.