Justice Catherine Davani appointed as an Aribitrator to the Ad Hoc Division of the 17th Asian Games
The International Council of Arbitration for Sport (‘ICAS’), by letter of 9th January, 2014, confirmed the appointment of Justice Catherine Davani, CSM, to be a member of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (‘CAS’) Ad Hoc Division for the XXVII Asian Games in Incheon, Republic of South Korea. Justice Davani was included amongst the special list of arbitrators who will sit and hear and decide on disputes that will occur during the games.
The games will commence on 19th September, 2014 and end on 4th October, 2014.
The Ad Hoc Tribunal is appointed following an agreement between the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and the ICAS in 2010. The Ad hoc Division is the first tribunal of its kind and follows the creation of other Ad Hoc Tribunals at the Olympic Games of 1996 and the Winter Olympic Games of 1998 and following that, the Commonwealth Games of 1998. The Asian Games will be the 3rd multi-sports event to host a CAS Ad Hoc division.
Justice Davani’s nomination to the Ad Hoc division of the 17th Asian Games, was supported by the PNG Olympic Committee, through Sir John Dawanicurra, Kt, OBE and also by the Chief Justice of Papua New Guinea, Sir Salamo Injia, Kt.
The Judiciary of Papua New Guinea recognises her Honour’s involvement in arbitration of sports disputes as a member of the International Sports Tribunal also known as the Court of Arbitration for Sports (‘CAS’) in which Justice Davani has participated in a number of cases since 2003. The Chief Justice in his support of Justice Davani’s nomination stated that Justice Davani is the only member of the Judiciary to hold such a position and has every confidence in Justice Davani, that she will perform her role as an Arbitrator with professionalism and will exercise good judgment.
Sir John Dawanicurra on other hand, is very familiar with Justice Davani’s involvement in sports since 1990 when Justice Davani was an executive member of the Papua New Guinea Football (Soccer) Association (‘PNGFA’) working with the then President of PNGFA, the late Peter Moemers and later Madiu Andrew. Justice Davani held various executive positions on the PNGFA from 1990 to 2004, of Women’s Representative, Treasurer and later Senior Vice-President. Justice Davani relinquished her post on the PNGFA in 2004, because of her appointment as a Judge, in March 2001.
Justice Davani has also represented Papua New Guinea as a player in PNG Women’s Football and has participated in several Oceania World Cup qualifiers, including being captain. Justice Davani was Legal Advisor to the PNG Olympic Committee, then PNG Sports Federation, in 2001 and was prior to that, actively involved in administration with the then PNG Sports Federation. She was also on the PNG Sports Commission Board in the late 90’s.
Justice Davani is presently a member of the PNG Olympic Committee’s Sports Disputes Tribunal and has been since 2010. She is presently the Chairperson of that body.
Justice Davani is presently assisting in drafting the Constitution and establishment of the PNG Sports Disputes Tribunal as a separate independent entity, in Papua New Guinea, most probably the first of its kind in the South Pacific, excluding Australia and New Zealand.
Sir John Dawanicurra said, “I am indeed excited that a Papua New Guinean has been approached and considered by the International Council of Arbitration for Sport to sit on an ad hoc Tribunal at a major world sporting event. It is not often that this happens and we are privileged and honored with this appointment. This is in view of the fact that developing nations often have very small representation at major sporting events within the Olympic movement.”
Justice Davani accepts that this appointment has come about because of the assistance and support of all those she has been involved with in sports. She extends her thank you and sincere appreciation to all those she has worked with as a sports administrator and played with and against as a player in a variety of sports but more particularly, women’s soccer. She also takes this opportunity to thank the Judiciary and the Chief Justice, Sir Salamo Injia, Kt; the PNG Olympic Committee and Secretary General, Mrs Auvita Rapilla; Sir John Dawanicurra; the Oceania Football Confederation; the PNG Football Association and President David Chung; to soccer and all soccer players and administrators, past and present, both men and women; all the sports men and women of Papua New Guinea and more so, those in the Master’s category, who are now contributing a lot to their sports as administrators and coaches and finally, to the sportsmen and women of today’s Papua New Guinea.