By Oscar Pilipili
Federation of International Volleyball ( FIVB) Presidential candidate Doug Beal brought his campaign to Nairobi despite reports that Africa has already endorsed Brazilian Ary da Silvia Graca as their choice for the top seat.
Speaking at a news conference in Nairobi, Beal confirmed that a strong and sustained development of volleyball in Africa will be on the very top of his agenda should he be elected FIVB President.
Speaking about his vision and plans for world volleyball, Beal stressed that he strongly believes Africa holds the future of the sport and as president will be eager to significantly increase the level of support to the continent.
“I see so much potential here in Africa both in indoor and beach volleyball. Throughout my professional life I have worked hard at creating winners and should I be elected president later this year, I will work tirelessly with African federations leaders in creating lots of winners here,” Beal said.
“If African football and some basketball team can compete with the best in the world why can’t we do the same in volleyball?”
This was in reference to consistent poor show recorded by African teams in FIVB competitions.
Kenya Volleyball Federation chairman Waithaka Kioni was at the news conference.
Beal said Africa needs a strong vision, a smart and focused plan and increased financial support over a longer period to match the rest of the world.
Beal’s tour of Nairobi comes amid reports indicating that four Confederations — Africa, Asia, Norceca and South America — have endorsed the candidacy of Graca as the next President of FIVB for four years.
CAVB president Amr Elwani declared to journalists in Nairobi that the decision to rally behind Graca was made during a meeting that was attended by FIVB Vice Presidents Saleh Bin Nasser of Saudi Arabia, Cristobal Marte Hoffiz of Dominican Republic and Graca, who prevailed over them for support.
The four confederations constitute 166 National Federations out of the total 220 affiliates of the FIVB and 53 are members of CAVB.