Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
9 Jan 2014
7:00 am

Olympic body backs athletics revival process

Wesley Botton

Athletics South Africa's (ASA) interim board received a boost yesterday when the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) backed the process it had followed in its attempted takeover of the federation.

James Evans, Chairman of the ASA Board. Picture ©Chris Ricco/Backpagepix

Sascoc said it took note of the seven-member interim leadership, who were appointed at the ASA annual general meeting in November after members unanimously agreed to remove the executive at a special meeting the previous evening.

“Based on the information provided both to Sascoc and the department of Sport and Recreation South Africa (SRSA), it would appear that the provisions of the ASA constitution were complied with,” the governing body said in a statement.

Sascoc, however, said it would wait for International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) representative Cheikh Thiare to arrive in the country later this month before considering whether ASA had been stabilised.

“Sascoc and SRSA both recognise the role of the IAAF and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) executive member, Dr Sam Ramsamy, in dealing with the ASA issue as a result of its alleged administrative malpractice.”

Sascoc suspended ASA last year after the federation’s suspended board was backed by the IAAF, and the global athletics body confirmed last month it still recognised embattled president James Evans, as the interim board had not received approval in advance.

Mandated to ensure elections were held within six months, the interim board is confident they would receive support from the IAAF after submitting 200 pages of supporting documents with background on the long-running strife within the federation.

Evans was suspended by the interim board last month but he and his depleted executive continued to cling to their posts, claiming their removal was unconstitutional.

Sascoc, who is led by president Gideon Sam, nonetheless suggested the end of the long-running saga at ASA was nearing an end.

“It is envisaged that a final directive will be provided [by Thiare and Ramsamy] for the advancement of athletics in our country and the upliftment of their suspension from Sascoc.”