Mikee: IOC post a lifelong commitment
MANILA, Philippines - Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski is looking forward to what could be a lifelong commitment as a full-fledged member of the International Olympic Committee.
“I have been blessed with another adventure to undertake,” said the equestrienne and individual gold medalist in the 2002 Asian Games in Busan, South Korea.
News of Jaworski’s election as IOC member came late Tuesday night. She earned 79 of the 97 votes cast during the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires.
Eight others were elected as IOC members along with the Filipina.
Jaworski becomes the new IOC representative to the Philippines. She will replace the retiring Frank Elizalde, who took the position in 1985.
At 39, Jaworski is perhaps one of the youngest IOC members. But she is not lacking in qualities as a great athlete and a very articulate person.
An IOC member is elected for an eight-year term but may be re-elected to several further terms until he/she reaches the retirement age of 70. From among the 204 countries under the Olympic movement, there are only 112 IOC members, among them members of Royalty.
They are not representatives of their respective countries to the IOC, but rather the opposite, as IOC representatives to their respective countries.
It is a highly-distinguished position.
Jaworski is the daughter of Philippine Olympic Committee president Jose Cojuangco, also the head of the Philippine Equestrian Federation.
She is the first cousin of President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III and niece of former President Cory Aquino, an icon of democracy.
Jaworski was so thankful for the development.
“Thank you for all your congratulatory messages,” said the mother of three. She is married to Robert Jaworski Jr., son of legendary Filipino basketball player and former Senator Robert Jaworski Sr.
The morning after her election in the Argentine capital, Jaworski, also a movie actress and television host, thought of her countrymen.
“Although far away, our prayers are with those at home facing adversity. We are looking forward to coming home very soon. God bless the Philippines,” she said via Twitter.
Jaworski making it to the IOC is certainly good news.
Her father, a former congressman, is in the United States, and couldn’t make it to Buenos Aires.
“Mr. Cojuangco was so excited when he called me from the US last night. He was so happy that Mikee made it,” said POC vice president Jose Romasanta.
Jaworski’s election as only the third IOC representative to the Philippines after Jorge B. Vargas and Elizalde is like a whiff of fresh air.
“It’s refreshing news from all the negative news you see everyday – the pork barrel scam and the standoff in Zamboanga,” said Romasanta.
“We join everybody in their proud elation of this accomplishment. It’s the IOC recognition of the capability of the Filipino coming from a small country.
“We have yet to win a gold medal in the Olympics. We are a small country and yet we are being given the recognition. It’s not easy to get into the IOC,” said Romasanta.
Jaworski worked hard and waited for this moment.
“She deserves it,” said Romasanta.