Surviving Tokyo Olympics: VIP Star Network Interview

Published August 1st, 2021 - 09:44 GMT
Mr. Chemweno has kindly shared his insights and recommendations on COVID protocols to ensure that athletes, broadcasters, and anyone else present at the Olympics remains safe and healthy. 
TOKYO, JAPAN - JULY 23, 2021: The Olympic Flame is seend during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo. Shuttertstock
Highlights
Mr. Chemweno has kindly shared his insights and recommendations on COVID protocols to ensure that athletes, broadcasters, and anyone else present at the Olympics remains safe and healthy. 

As the world is watching their national champions compete at the Tokyo Summer Olympics, less and less spectators are able to attend the games in Japan in person and are relying on live broadcast channels and online updates for safety reasons. This week the number of COVID cases in Japan surged to 259. With rising concerns about this universal tournament and other upcoming ones, Al Bawaba interviewed the CEO of VIP StarNetwork Mr. Mr. Johonniuss Chemweno. 

Mr. Chemweno has kindly shared his insights and recommendations on COVID protocols to ensure that athletes, broadcasters, and anyone else present at the Olympics remains safe and healthy. 

Welcome to Al Bawaba Mr. Chemeno, as we are all watching the different games of the Japan Summer Olympics, can you please tell our sport page readers what are the biggest challenges with keeping the Olympics safe during COVID? As we are hearing of positive cases erupting in Japan?

The Biggest Challenges with keeping the Olympics safe during COVID is ensuring compliance is strictly followed by every athlete and everyone who interacts with all people associated within the Olympics environment. The guidelines associated within the Olympics is complex in nature due to athletes and all associates traveling around the world and many nations have little to no access to Vaccines. The positivity rate across Olympic participating countries completely differs as each country has acted independently to combat Covid-19, which creates a multi-faceted challenge for the Olympics to solve and ensure the safety and health of everyone involved.

What is the best technology and procedures to ensure safety for those on-site in Tokyo?

On-Site Covid-19 protocols for worldwide sporting events and games require technological advancements, from wearable health and wellness tech to integrated apps that monitor contract tracing, testing and vaccines will assist with keeping the games safe. 

In your opinion how did the sports industry itself change during COVID, and which changes will stick around?

Sport today has gone through drastic changes on and off the fields. Athletes have been under greater scrutiny for following all rules and regulations in addition to ensuring a high level of performance. The areas that in my opinion will stick around, limited access for Fans to athletes and coaching staff and the physical barriers in spaces that can’t ensure are vaccinated or tested negative for Covid-19.

The success of the current summer Olympics as well as that of the Euro2020 will obviously impact all upcoming world tournaments, can you tell us how?

The past events at the European Championships were ultimately a success. There were reported Covid-19 cases, which led to athletes being forced to quarantine, in addition to fans not being able to attend games due to stadium limits and testing requirements for each Venue. The Covid protocols associated with the European Championships are a good standard to follow as they demonstrated venues in various countries can manage the pandemic and continue the games schedule, all-while maintaining a safe environment.

Can you shed some light on the procedures taken to ensure the safety of participants in what is called Bio-secure bubbles during and ahead of competitions?

​​​​​​​Bio-secure bubbles have shown to be successful based on the procedures implemented. The bubbles require a multi-faceted approach and a multiple level of partners to ensure participants maintain their own ability to follow guidelines without the outside world’s involvement, in which viruses' likelihood of entering the bio-secure bubble drastically decrease.

Can you give us examples of your top clients from the sport industry?

​​​​​​​Our healthcare company and comprehensive platform has allowed our medical teams involvement across several areas of sport throughout the pandemic either directly or indirectly. One key area that we like to highlight is the NCAA.

Are you following the Olympics yourself and which are your favorite teams and games?

​​​​​​​Yes, I follow the Olympics; lately I’ve been watching swimming, volleyball, tennis, football and table tennis.

Can you reassure our readers that their favorite group games and tournaments open to live audiences are back to stay?

​​​​​​​Unfortunately, it is difficult to measure if group games, tournaments and live audiences are back to stay.  Each country is at different stages and have not all reached herd immunity. Furthermore, governments have begun creating mandates for indoor and outdoor events. Each country maintains disparate laws that effectuate our ability to ensure we are back to normal.

We do hope that the resumption of tournaments and games continues and the industry and its lovers grow again better than ever even if everyone has to adapt to new ways and measures. 


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