Sir John accepts honour at PNGSFOC’s 50th birthday

Normal, Sports

The National, Tuesday 29th November 2011

FORMER Rabaul MP Sir John Kaputin was given the honour in “The Hall of Fame” during the 50th anniversary celebrations of the PNG Sports Federation and Olympic Committee at the Lamana Hotel last Thursday.
Introduced this year, The Hall of Fame is to recognise some of Papua New Guinea’s sporting heroes like Sir John, who was an athlete in 1960s. The concept was an initiative of the PNGSFOC secretary-general Auvita Rapilla.
Sir John was one of the recipients at the inaugural event. The other recipient was Edward Laboran. Sir John, one of the first national athletes to break into the sporting circles dominated by whites, said Jamaica, although a small country had the best athletes in the world.
Unlike PNG, he said: “Jamaica is not populated but they still produce the best athletes in the world and there was no reason why PNG cannot be up there.”
Sir John, who raised the bar in his heydays, said: “For the past 50 years, PNG made some headway in sports development and improved on effective social networking.”
To commemorate the 50 years of sporting achievement for PNG were the Sports Minister Sali Subam and former Oceania National Olympic Committee president Kevan Gosper flew in from Australia to be part of the celebrations.
PNGSFOC president Sir Henry ToRobert said the organisation would continue to review and refine their operations with their partners to meet the challenges of today’s world. 
“We will continue to mould and shape our sportsmen and women at the elite level and that is our commitment for the years ahead,” he said.