Ali Harzallah has died aged 81 ©IPC

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has paid tribute to former Governing Board member Ali Harzallah following his death aged 81.

The Tunisian, who served on the Board between 2009 and 2013, died on Sunday (January 16) and was also a former head of the Tunisian Paralympic Committee.

Harzallah held various other positions at sporting organisations for people with disabilities, including President of the Arab Handisport Union, and was once President of the Tunisian Federation of Sports.

"The Paralympic Movement is deeply saddened as it has lost a very valuable member, a true champion of equality, an inspiration and a trailblazer," IPC President Andrew Parsons said.

"I had the pleasure of serving alongside Ali on the IPC Governing Board and he was a Para sports pioneer, not just in Tunisia, but in Africa.

"His hard work organising competitions, training courses and development opportunities for Para athletes, coaches and officials across various countries will continue to have a profound impact on the region for many years to come.

"My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues at this time."

The Tunisian National Paralympic Committee also honoured Harzallah.

"It is with great sadness and sorrow that we received the news of the death of Mr Ali Harzullah, the President of the Arab Union for private groups and the former President of the Tunisian University of Sports for the Disabled," read a statement.

"And with this great loss, the head of the Tunisian National Committee Mr Mohammed Al-Mazooghi and members of the executive office extend their deepest condolences to the family of the deceased Rajin."

Outside of the sporting world, Harzallah was a school mathematics teacher.