At long last, Samoa’s Olympic medal arrives
It has arrived.
Ele Opeloge’s silver medal from the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games has finally arrived.
This was confirmed by a very happy President and Head Coach of the Samoa Weightlifting Federation, Tuaopepe Asiata Wallwork.
“I need to talk to the Minister of Sports, Loau Keneti Sio and the Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi,” he said. “Earlier the minister told me that the government is keen to do something so I think it’s good for the government to be involved together with S.A.S.N.O.C.
Tuaoepe said they will have to work out how the medal will be presented but it is likely that Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi will make the presentation.
“Nobody from the International Olympic Committee will be here because they sent the medal through D.H.L,” he said.
“The main thing is the medal is here now and finally we have it in the country. It is finally ours.
“Everything now is official. This is a great achievement by Samoa for Samoa.”
The medal is a brand new one.
“Because the girl who won it before did not want to return the medal so the I.O.C. had to do a new one and engrave Ele’s name on it together with the diploma and a special pin that comes with it.
“I just received the call today so I will advice Ele now and have a talk to the government and also the president of the S.A.S.N.O.C about what to do next.”
The medal is a proud moment for the President and he was quick to acknowledge the love of God over Samoa and Ele.
“Well, first and foremost we should be thanking God that what we have been waiting for is finally here,” he said.
“We have been waiting for this moment so we are thankful. It’s a proud moment for Ele because she is the one who deserves this moment.
“What we need to do now is to honor this performance and recognise it because it is in our history books.
“This is the first time a Samoan athlete has won a medal like this, not only that but it’s in the history of Weightlifting as well and also in the South Pacific that a female has won a medal at the Olympics.
“There are a lot of things that we need to be thankful for and it is making history in many ways and for us especially it’s a very proud moment for Samoa weightlifting and it’s a moment that we will never forget.”
Ele’s name will go down in the history books and she is a hero.
“Whoever is going to be in the sport in the future this is what they need to aim for to better what Ele has produced.
“I want to say thank you to the people of Samoa for their support and their tapuaiga, I want to thank S.A.S.N.O.C., the government of Samoa and also Ele’s family for always supporting her. Lastly I want to thank the Weightlifting Federation for making this happen and encouraging her to be the best.”