Bach a popular choice as IOC President
11 September 2013
IOC: Germany’s Thomas Bach, a gold medallist in fencing, has been elected 9th President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) telling his colleagues “my door, my ears and my heart are always open to you”.
The 125th Session of the IOC in Buenos Aires, Argentina, elected Bach ahead of five other candidates to replace Jacques Rogge who is stepping down after 12 years as the head of the IOC.
Bach, 59, a lawyer and President of the German Olympic Committee, was considered the front-runner to succeed Rogge. He thanked the IOC members for their “overwhelming support” and he promised to work closely with those who did not vote for him.
“I want to lead according to my motto of unity and diversity,” he said. “I will do my very best to balance the interests of all the stakeholders.”
He won the the vote decisively polling 49 votes in the second round followed by Richard Carrion, 29, Ser Miang Ng 6, Denis Oswald, 5 and Sergey Bubka 4. CK Wu was eliminated in the first round of voting.
He won an Olympic gold medal at the 1976 Montreal Games and also won a world championship in Argentina. He thanked Argentina for their friendship back then and their warm welcome this time. “I still have friends here” he said.
Bach’s first duty at the beginning of his eight year term was to present the Olympic Order in gold to the departing President, Jacques Rogge. Mr Rogge left the stage to a standing ovation from the delegates.
Mike Tancred in Buenos Aires
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