Ex-ITTF president Sharara gets four-year ban for role in TMS rights buyback
The International Table Tennis Federation today banned its former president Adham Sharara from any activity with the sport's governing body for the next four years, after finding him guilty of breaching his fiduciary duties.
Sharara (pictured) had been president of the ITTF since 1999, but stepped down in 2014 to take up the newly-created role of chairman.
It was during his time as chairman that the Canadian official is alleged to have had a "conflict of interest" in the process of the ITTF buying back its commercial and marketing rights from TMS International.
TMS had been the marketing partner of the ITTF since 2003, but the federation took the rights in-house in January 2017.
Sharara is also said to have interfered in the bidding process "on a major ITTF equipment contract" and inappropriately used ITTF funds.
The ITTF executive committee, which took the decision after reviewing evidence reports, financial records and recommendations, including legal advice prepared by external legal counsel Withers KhattarWong and a report by professional services firm BDO, concluded that the federation had "suffered damage as a result of Mr Sharara’s actions. It has therefore taken this difficult decision in order to protect the integrity of the ITTF and the sport of table tennis."
The ITTF claimed that Sharara and his legal team had "rejected various invitations from the executive committee to attend hearings to answer their questions, put forward his defence or attempt to resolve the matter in good faith.
"The ITTF executive committee’s decision to suspend Mr Sharara has been declared final and it considers the matter concluded."