IOC and ASOIF to begin process of replacing Wu on executive board
By Callum Murray
The International Olympic Committee and Association of Summer Olympic International Federations are set to begin the process of finding a replacement for Ching-Kuo Wu, the high-profile Taiwanese sports administrator, on the IOC’s executive board, after Wu stepped down against a background of bitter infighting at AIBA, the international federation for boxing in the Olympics.
Wu yesterday announced his resignation as president of AIBA, and today, at a meeting of the ASOIF Council, he resigned from his ASOIF positions (he was a vice-president and Council member of ASOIF).
The IOC announced that Wu had stepped down from the position he held on the executive board after five years, while retaining his IOC membership of 29 years. Wu represented summer Olympic international federations on the board, so it is expected that ASOIF will be asked to help elect his successor.
However, Andrew Ryan, ASOIF’s executive director, told Sportcal today: “Any move with respect to a successor on IOC EB will come later and depend on IOC. We have to understand the process first as it will be an IOC member to stand for election to IOC EB whenever that takes place.”
Uğur Erdener, the president of World Archery, was today elected as an ASOIF vice president, and an election to replace Wu for the remainder of his term as a member of ASOIF Council will be held during the next ASOIF general assembly in April 2018.Wu’s position at AIBA had become increasingly untenable after the AIBA executive committee this month unanimously backed, by a margin of 14-0, a suspension imposed pending the outcome of disciplinary proceedings over several serious charges, including financial mismanagement.
However, AIBA said in a statement: “Both parties agreed that at this stage there is no indication of any unethical behaviour by either party.”
Wu was elected to represent the summer Olympic federations on the IOC’s executive board at the ASOIF general assembly in Quebec City in 2012, seeing off a challenge from Ireland’s Pat McQuaid, the former president of the UCI, the international cycling federation.
The decision of just two candidates to put their names forward was surprise, after it had been widely expected that others, including perhaps Marisol Casado, the president of the International Triathlon Union, and Patrick Baumann, the general secretary of FIBA, the international basketball federation, would stand.
Those two officials will once again be among the favourites to succeed Wu on the IOC executive board.
Normally, the ASOIF president would additionally represent the federations on the IOC’s executive board, but an alternative had to be sought in 2012, given that the incumbent, Francesco Ricci Bitti, had reached the age (70) at which IOC members must compulsorily retire. Ricci Bitti remains the ASOIF president.
Wu was unanimously suspended by AIBA’s disciplinary commission in October, with Franco Falcinelli, AIBA’s most senior vice-president, who had been leading the so-called Interim Management Committee, set up by a group of disgruntled executive committee members, assuming the responsibilities of president.
However, emphasising the détente reached, Falcinelli is to ask the executive committee to vote in favour of a recommendation that Wu be granted the title of AIBA honorary president, subject to ratification by the congress.
The outgoing president was alleged to have racked up debts of SFr15 million ($15.2 million) on behalf of AIBA and, the disciplinary commission argued last month, “led AIBA to the verge of bankruptcy.”
It also claimed he had been “hiding the serious financial situation of the association from the public, the EC and national federations.”
The power struggle broke out in July following an AIBA executive committee meeting in Moscow, and continued on the sidelines of the subsequent World Championships in Hamburg, Germany.