Moana Moeka’a: Only in the Cook Islands

Thursday May 07, 2020 Published in Letters to the Editor

Dear editor,

With my limited experience in sports administration, I find it absurd to read of Cook Islands Sports and National Olympic Committee (CISNOC) imposing restrictions (and reinforcing the prime minister's “ban”) on the resumption of certain sports (“It’s play time for 18 sports”, May 2).


I have always understood that CISNOC can only dictate as to what the national federations can do when it comes to Pacific and Mini Games, Commonwealth Games and Olympic Games.

I just find it bizarre that CISNOC can tell the federations how to run their own competitions because that has not been the case in the past.

I have not heard of the Australian or New Zealand equivalents of CISNOC placing restrictions and reinforcing “bans” on individual sports. The main reason why sports cannot kick off in those countries is because of the physical distancing restrictions which are backed up by the law – are our “bans” legal?

The argument against the playing of contact sports because of the risk of flying someone to New Zealand in the event of a serious injury (as there is only one flight per week) is in my view, a weak one.

The country has been declared Covid-19-free by the prime minister since last month, so why are we trying to wrap everything up in cotton wool?

Moana Moeka'a

1 comment

  • Comment Link Owen Lewis Friday, 08 May 2020 11:22 posted by Owen Lewis

    As background, all National Sports Federations are members of CISNOC. As such CISNOC offers support to all its members in their pursuit of their goals and aspirations for "their" sport. The CISNOC strategic plan also has clear goals to increase the levels of physical activity in the country. CISNOC does not dictate or impose anything on its members. It does not tell their members how to run their sport. It offers support to them in running their support. It advocates for them individually and where there is shared interest. In no way has CISNOC placed restrictions on our Federations. The truth is quite the opposite. It has lobbied and advocated for the Federations. The COVID-19 2020 Act places all decision making during this time with The Secretary of Health and the Minister. CISNOC has acted in its capacity as a peak body to be a voice and to advocate for sport in general and our individual members. We welcome the resumption of sport and look forward to all our member Federations resuming what they do best - organising, managing and playing their sport.

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