Legendary Portuguese marathon Olympic gold medallist Rosa Mota, was unveiled as one of the very first SIGA Champions during an official reception jointly hosted with the Portuguese National Olympic Committee in Lisbon. As a SIGA Champion, Mota will draw on her experience as an athlete to help develop SIGA and preserve the integrity of sport. She will contribute to safeguarding sport’s positive values and its vital role for the benefit of all current and future athletes.
SIGA has also been working closely with SIGA member, Special Olympics, to engage with its athletes and encourage them to join the vital cause against corruption in sport. Many Special Olympic athletes have already signed up as SIGA Champions and many more expected in the months ahead.
The SIGA Council said:
“Athletes are at the very heart of sport and have a vital role to play in safeguarding its integrity. No one should be angrier by the scandals blighting sport than the millions of clean athletes around the world. They are uniquely positioned to understand the challenges facing sport and the ways sports administrators can help overcome these challenges.
“We would like to thank Special Olympics for the incredible support of this initiative from the outset, and we look forward to working closely with your amazing athletes.
Speaking after the launch, SIGA Champion Rosa Mota said:
“It was an honour to be asked to be a SIGA Champion and help promote a vision I truly believe in. There is undoubtedly a lot of work to do but I am excited to be able to play a part in taking sport into a new era.
“Sport is about the athletes. That is why it is important to have athletes at the heart of organisations such as SIGA. If they did not exist then the sports that athletes play, and that the millions fans love to watch, would be threatened by corruption and a lack of integrity. I am proud to be part of this important milestone.”
Commenting on the appointment, David Evangelista, President & Managing Director of Special Olympics Europe Eurasia, said: “Special Olympics is honoured to have Gilmour Borg serve as one of SIGA’s first Ambassadors. Representing some 5.6 million athletes with intellectual disabilities, Gilmour’s message and example embodies the transformative power that sport has to create sustained positive change in the world today. Special Olympics looks forward to its continued collaboration with SIGA in elevating the voice of athletes with intellectual disabilities as part of a shared commitment to see sport be at the service of all who seek its strong benefits.”
The launch outlined the key objectives for the initiative, and expressed the important role of the SIGA Champions. The initial set of SIGA Champions is predominantly made up of athletes from founding SIGA member Special Olympics, but is set to grow and diversify in the coming months to help contribute to the development of SIGA as a neutral and independent institution helping to safeguard the integrity of sport.
Kiera Byland, Lucy Meyer and Kester Edwards also join Gilmour Borg and Rosa Mota as the first SIGA Champions.
### Notes to Editors
Visit our website at www.siga-sport.net
Find us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SIGAlliance
SIGA is an independent and neutral coalition of more than 80 international multi-industry supporters. It is the only organisation to bring together sport, governments, academia, international organisations, sponsors, business, rights holders, NGOs and professional services companies, from every region in the world, around a common cause of fostering greater integrity throughout sport.
SIGA’s members and supporters include Mastercard, Deloitte, the European Professional Football Leagues, Dow Jones, PwC, the World Bank, the International Centre for Sport Security, the Basel Institute on Good Governance, the Commonwealth Games Federation, the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees, Special Olympics, the Spanish Football League, the Portuguese Olympic Committee, esports, World Taekwondo, the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation and World Snooker.