After the landmark ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) last week against the International Boxing Association’s sham election in May, there are growing calls for a fresh election.
The court found that Dutch candidate Boris van der Vorst was unfairly disqualified by IBA’s nomination unit on the eve of the election. He was the sole candidate standing against the Russian incumbent Umar Kremlev. After van der Vorst was disqualified, Kremlev was duly ushered into another term ‘unopposed’.
Now that the Court has found van der Vorst’s disqualification unjustified, the ‘election’ itself lacks any legitimacy. IBA would be well served if it heeds the court’s judgement and announces a fresh election.
Kremlev himself seemed to bow to the inevitable.
“If CAS has stated that my opponent should have been eligible to stand for election, then let us have a new election,” Kremlev declared in a press release following the court ruling.
He, however, left the decision to the IBA Board of Directors which meets tomorrow, June 24.
Van der Vorst wrote a letter to the Board today, urging it to “repair the damage” and “avoid a constitutional crisis.” The letter was distributed to National Federations, and read by WorldBoxing.Today.
It is co-signed by Steve Hartley, President of Boxing New Zealand, Mike McAtee, Executive Director of USA Boxing, and Per-Axel Sjöholm, President of the Swedish Boxing Federation. They had also been disqualified by IBA on the eve of their election to the Board, and were similarly found by the Court to have been wrongly disqualified.
“We request the Board of Directors, less President Kremlev, who has a direct conflict of interest, vote to convene an Extraordinary Congress and Presidential election within the constitutionally minimum mandated period and maximum of 90 days from June 24, 2022, so that the legitimacy and integrity of IBA’s new Presidential election cannot be questioned in the future.”
“Without holding a fair and democratic Presidential Election, IBA will not be able to fulfil the criteria set by the IOC and will not ensure its reinstatement within the Olympic Movement,” said their joint letter.
All eyes will be on the Board of Directors to take the necessary step to restore IBA’s crumbling credibility by announcing a fresh election.