A boycott by Tanzania of the Montreal Olympics has added to the political wrangling surrounding the Games.
GV: Olympic village
SV and CU: Mallard with New Zealand delegation leader Bill Holley. (2 shots)
CU: Holley being interviewed (interview continues over shots of athletes black in training)
SV: African athletes at Olympic village
MALLARD: "Mr Bill Holley, as the leader of the New Zealand delegation at the Olympic Games, what is your reaction to the decision by Tanzania to withdraw from the 1976 Olympics?"
HOLLEY: "Well naturally I think, in common with most sporting people throughout the world, one of particular disappointment that this action has been deemed necessary. After all, there has been a terrific built-up in respect of the prospective meeting of Filbert Bayi and john Walker and the sporting world, whether those may be people who are viewing the Olympics, or whether they are ??? viewing it through the ??? I'm sure it's going to create a feeling of tremendous let-down and I feel dreadfully sorry for those Tanzani athletes who have been denied the opportunity of competing in these Games through Government action. I can say to you here and now that there is no member of the New Zealand team of 87 who has competed with or against South Africans or South Africa as a country in any sport at which we are represented at these Games, and as all national bodies in New Zealand are autonomous, we are at a complete loss to understand that a country which is as white as the driven snow should be penalized in this way, For in no way, has New Zealand at any stage breached any of the rules or regulations of the International Olympic Committee".
The meeting between Tanzanian Filbert Bayi, the world 1,500 metres record holder, and New Zealand's John Walker, holder of the world mile record, had been expected to be a highlight of the Games. Bayi says he is disappointed but understands his government's position.
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Background: A boycott by Tanzania of the Montreal Olympics has added to the political wrangling surrounding the Games. The present New Zealand All blacks rugby football tour of South Africa sparked off reaction from the Organization of African Unity (OAU), which last week called for African non-participation in the Games if New Zealand is allowed to take part. So far Tanzania is the only country that has responded to the call.
SYNOPSIS: At the Olympic Village on saturday (10 July) Visnews Sports Editor Neil Mallard asked New Zealand team leader Bill Holley about the boycott affair.
Many African athletes are already in Montreal, but there is a growing possibility that other African nations will follow Tanzania's example if the New Zealand team takes part. The president of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa, Abraham Ordia of Nigeria, is in Montreal to seek support for a ban on New Zealand.