Apolonia Vaivai returns, apologizes to Weightlifting Fiji
January 21, 2021 1:34 pm
Apolonia Vaivai [Source: International Weightlifting Federation]
One of the elite Levuka lifters that boycotted Weightlifting Fiji in 2018 has apologized for her actions.
Apolonia Vaivai apologized in writing and in person to the current and past WF Executives for her actions in bringing disrepute to Weightlifting Fiji’s name.
The Levuka Weightlifting Club which included stars like Vaivai, Eileen Cikamatana and Manueli Tulo boycotted the Oceania Championship in 2018 in protest of the appointment of Hossein Tavakoli as national head coach.
In her letter to WF, Vaivai pledges to speak the truth about what happened in the past regarding the issues between her, the President, the coach, other parties, the boycotting athletes and the reason for the boycott.
She says for the past three years, she has been misled by her coaches and some officials about the issues between Weightlifting Fiji and the Levuka group.
Vaivai says her naivety, she boycotted Weightlifting Fiji thinking she was doing the right thing but now she realize she was misled and regretted the decision to leave her career behind.
She adds she made a mistake in giving up her IOC Scholarship and removing herself from the sport that has given her so much and she now knows that there was no truth in what was told to her about Weightlifting Fiji.
The Olympian says takes full responsibility for her actions knowing that she has caused much pain and grief to everyone involved.
WF President, Della Shaw-Elder says this is a bold step by Vaivai and they welcome her back and look forward to working with her as they transition her back into competition.
Della Shaw says she is happy that the truth has prevailed and Vaivai’s willingness to tell all should highlight Weightlifting Fiji’s stance of only wanting the best for its athletes and how it was taken out of context by a few.
Vaivai has accepted that she needs to comply with the Rules and Regulations and perform to the required professional standards and code of conduct as she makes her return.
She will re-join WF under Suva Weightlifting Club and Vaivai has now been reactivated in the global World Anti-Doping database and is expected to be part of the Fiji Team for the current Oceania on-line League competition.
Vaivai won three gold medals in three consecutive Commonwealth Championships from 2016-2018, the only Fiji athlete to ever do so.
She won Bronze medals at the 2014 and 2018 Commonwealth Games and she qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on merit.