The OCA is ramping up efforts to ensure votes are cast for its Athletes' Committee elections ©OCA

The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) is ramping up its efforts to ensure as many votes as possible are made for its Athletes' Committee elections which are set to take place at Hangzhou 2022.

The upcoming Asian Games is due to be the site of the first ever OCA Athletes' Committee elections.

The OCA has stated that athletes will be able to vote at one of six voting stations from tomorrow until October 6 before the results are announced on October 7, one day before the Closing Ceremony.

These stations are located in the Athletes' Village in Hangzhou and at their counterparts in the Games' sub-sites of Tonglu, Jinhua, Ningbo, Chun'an and Wenzhou.

The athletes' dining hall in the main Asian Games Village has been decorated with colourful booths, the "Your Vote, Your Choice" slogan, and the QR code that will allow participants to make their vote.

In addition to this, the OCA has produced information posters featuring photos of the 26 candidates that have been nominated by National Olympic Committees to vie for the 10 positions. 

It is hoped that the posters will attract more attention to the elections and allow athletes to see who has been nominated from their region.

"Exercise your power and have your say during the 19th Asian Games," read an OCA statement urging athletes to vote.

"Your vote speaks volumes, athletes.

"Make your voice heard."

The decision to have elections for the Athletes' Committee was made at the OCA's Athletes' Forum earlier this year in Bangkok.

Formerly, the Committee chair was nominated by their NOC and elected at the governing body's General Assembly.

The remaining members were then selected by the Executive Board from nominated candidates.

There are a total of 26 candidates vying for 10 positions on the OCA Athletes' Committee ©OCA
There are a total of 26 candidates vying for 10 positions on the OCA Athletes' Committee ©OCA

A vote for the new chair is set to take place in July next year, but is subject to Executive Board approval and will require a constitutional amendment.

At the March meeting, OCA President Husain Al-Musallam told insidethegames that elections would be "the proper way to get the voice [heard] correctly" and will "help us to improve our services to the athletes".

One male and one female representative from five zones - West Asia, East Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, and Southeast Asia - are set to be elected to the Committee. 

Qatar's Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games high jump champion Mutaz Barshim is one of six male candidates for West Asia in what is the most populous category.

Triple Commonwealth Games champion and London 2012 Olympic bronze medallist from India Saina Nehwal, meanwhile, is the only female candidate from South Asia and is assured a place on the Committee as a result.