Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus has addressed the 129th Session of the International Olympic Committee on the morning of August 3 at the Oceanico Convention Centre in Rio de Janeiro.
The eminent economist spoke on the theme of the potential of social business, the Olympics and sports to work together to solve social problems, particularly bring opportunities to help those who are excluded from the global economic system.
The session was attended by more than two hundred Presidents of the Olympic Committees from around the world and their guests. Among the dignitaries present at the speech, which was moderated by Mr Thomas Bach, President of the IOC, were HRH Princess Anne of UK, HRH Prince Albert of Monaco and the HRH Crown Prince of Denmark, Grand Duke of Luxemburg.
Professor Yunus gave a 45 minute speech which was followed by a question and answer session. Fifteen members of committee asked questions on all aspects of social orientation of the IOC including on the topics of what candidates cities should do, what the Olympic legacy in each city should be, how social business can handle issues of criminality, what the retired Olympic athletes should do. The Q and A session lasted nearly 40 minutes exceeding the original 15 minutes allotted for that. The President of IOC, Mr Thomas Bach, joked that if he allowed all the questions then the Opening Session scheduled for August 5 may be delayed.
The session was live cast on IOC website and the link of the speech and Q and A was shared on Youtube by the IOC.
After the IOC speech, Professor Yunus was invited to meet the Mayors of the Candidate Cities for the 2024 Olympics which included Mayor Anne Hidalgo of Paris and Mayor of Los Angeles, Budapest and Rome.
The President of IOC has invited Professor Yunus to attend the Welcome Ceremony of the team of Refugee athletes at the Olympic Village on August 3 evening, who are participating for the first time at the Olympics, have been given a special status and will be carrying the Olympic flag.
On August 4, Professor Yunus will participate in the Torch Relay as a torch bearer along with other celebrities in the last leg of the relay before the official opening of the Olympics on the evening of August 5.
Yunus Centre will post live video footage from the torch relay on the Muhamamd Yunus and Yunus Centre Facebook pages which may be shared by those who wish to do so.