The triple Olympic gold medallist Pyrros Dimas has highlighted the importance of listening to the views of nations around the world during the process of restoring weightlifting’s credibility.
For the first time since he declared as a candidate for the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Presidency, Dimas has issued a formal statement about his plans.
He said: "A change of leadership and culture is essential and we must reset the Federation with better values, improved governance and real integrity."
Dimas won three golds and a bronze for Greece at the Olympic Games between 1992 and 2004, is President of the Greek Weightlifting Federation, an Executive Board member of the IWF and also a key figure for the United States in his role as technical director of USA Weightlifting.
He plans to consult and listen to the views of as many National Federations as he can before "sharing more details of my new vision for weightlifting" in the coming weeks.
"My door is always open to hear feedback and learn new ideas," said Dimas, 49.
"It is vital that the future vision of the IWF addresses the needs of all our members."
The International Olympic Committee has repeatedly criticised the IWF in recent months and has said its place on the Olympic Games programme is under threat.
A new Constitution is due to be adopted in June, under the IWF’s current plans, with elections to be held after the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Here is my statement on the future of Weightlifting and the IWF. Thank you.— Pyrros Dimas (@Pyrros_Dimas) March 9, 2021
Voici ma déclaration personnelle sur l'avenir de l'haltérophilie et les développements sur l'IWF. Merci.
Δήλωσή μου για τις εξελίξεις στη Διεθνή Ομοσπονδία Άρσης Βαρών και το μέλλον του αθλήματος. 🏋️♂️🏋️♀️ pic.twitter.com/ks2bJbi1NX
"The credibility of IWF and weightlifting has eroded so it is fundamental to rebuild trust and become an International Federation that can be respected again," said Dimas.
"We must do everything in our power to ensure the essential reforms are implemented properly and urgently - as rightly guided by the International Olympic Committee."
Dimas also highlighted the importance of giving athletes a voice, and making weightlifting more marketable.
"As an Olympian, I know how important it is for athletes to be heard so we must empower them with a proper voice.
"Without athletes, our sport is nothing so we must treat them with the respect they deserve.
"The brand and reputation of weightlifting have been tarnished by mismanagement, doping scandals and infighting.
"This must stop.
"With fresh leadership and a new approach we can set a new course for weightlifting as a clean, revitalised and united sport.
"We need to accelerate participation, review the presentation of our events, improve our global marketing and digital offering and harness the power of data in an ethical way to understand and grow our fan base.
"There is so much untapped potential in our sport and I will implement new commercial ideas and sponsor opportunities so all member federations benefit from greater revenues and funding."