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Iranian professor, Malaysian politician listed for Int’l Women’s Day Awards

Date:

TEHRAN:  Professor Fatemeh Rakhshani from Iran and Ras Adiba Radzi, a Malaysian politician and community activist, among 3 nominated for leadership category of the 2022 International Women’s Day Recognition.

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has released the shortlist for the 2022 International Women’s Day Recognition, with winners to be announced on 8 March’s global celebration of women and gender equality.

Three outstanding female candidates each respectively make up the Leadership and Emerging Leadership category. Three organisations have been shortlisted for the National Paralympic Committee (NPC) and International Federation (IF) category. 

The awards primarily recognise women in the Paralympic Movement who inspire and emulate the Paralympic ideals and serve as positive role models. Following hundreds of nominations, this year the shortlisted women and organisations nominated come from Zimbabwe, Malaysia, Iran, Botswana, Singapore, New Zealand, Canada and Mongolia.

The winners will be decided by the IPC’s Women in Sport Committee, chaired by Rita van Driel.

Rita said, “The 2022 International Women’s Day Recognition supports one of the IPC’s key strategic objectives, which is to promote gender balance in leadership positions across the Paralympic Movement.  All of the women and organisations nominated this year made exceptional progress in 2021. What is clear to the Women in Sport Committee from all the Award applications we received this year is that across the Movement are many women bringing disability inclusion to the heart of governments, delivering change to the sporting infrastructure of their country and having an impact for persons with disabilities in their communities.”

This category recognises sustained and consistent leadership over a period of time, advocacy, overall contributions and impact promoting and supporting women in sport. Candidates considered included coaches, current or former athletes, administrators and officials.

Rakhshani, current chairperson of the Asian Paralympic Committee’s Women in Sport Committee, has a substantial influence on women in Para sport in Iran.

A two-term vice-president of NPC Iran, she increased the number of females in the Iranian delegation at the Paralympic Games from less than five per cent at the London 2012 to 17 percent at the Rio 2016. Through her athleticism as a Para swimmer, Rakhshani also works to involve communities in physical activity.

Oripa Mubika of Zimbabwa was one of the few female Para sport coaches in Zimbabwe before the country joined the IPC. As Secretary General on NPC Zimbabwe, she has facilitated the introduction of sitting volleyball in 2016, increased female representation on the board to 50 per cent, and ensured that at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, NPC Zimbabwe has their first female coach. 

Malaysian politician and community activist, Ras Adiba Radzi is a serving senator in Malaysian Parliament. She has represented Malaysia in Para badminton, shooting and currently President of National Para Shooting Association. With a commitment to inspire and transform the lives of persons with disabilities from within Parliament she is driving change and in 2020 was chosen by their Prime Minister in 2020 to represent Persons With Disability Community.

The awards primarily recognise women in the Paralympic Movement who inspire and emulate the Paralympic ideals and serve as positive role models. Following hundreds of nominations, this year the shortlisted women and organisations nominated come from Zimbabwe, Malaysia, Iran, Botswana, Singapore, New Zealand, Canada and Mongolia.

The 2021 winners were Kate Caithness of World Curling Federation (Leadership category), Iranian Para archer Zahra Nemati (Emerging Leadership category) and World Para Powerlifting (National Paralympic Committee/International Federation category).

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