ASA hearings postponed
Leonard Chuene (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Athletics South Africa's (ASA) suspended board members and staff, relieved of their duties in November last year, won't face disciplinary hearings for another few months.
ASA administrator Ray Mali had hoped to start the disciplinary hearings against the eight remaining board members, including president Leonard Chuene, and three staff members by mid-March. But he said on Thursday the process had been postponed as the federation's legal representatives continue to collect evidence against the suspended figures.
"Our lawyers believe we will have everything in place to conduct the hearings by the end of April, but we must also give the suspended people sufficient notice so their legal representatives can prepare properly before they face these hearings," Mali said.
"Only once this process has been completed can we democratically elect a new board.
"The IAAF (international Association of Athletics Federations) are satisfied with the progress we have made thus far and will come back to us for an update at the end of August."
Mali, a board member of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), was sent in to clean up the federation in November last year after SASCOC suspended the entire executive and three staff members for financial mismanagement and their handling of world 800 metres champion Caster Semenya.
The three staff members - Malehopo, events and marketing manager Phiwe Mlangeni-Tsholetsane and Chuene's personal assistant Humile Bogatsu -have all been suspended with full pay for the last five months while the interim board struggles to recover from the financial mess created by Chuene and his executive.
Mali said they hoped a forensic audit, ordered after shredded documents and deleted computer files were discovered at the ASA head office in Houghton, would be completed by the end of this month.
SASCOC had originally given Mali a six-month deadline to have a new executive in place by the end of May, but that deadline has been extended until August.
Meanwhile, Semenya has reportedly threatened to take legal action against ASA if she is not allowed to run at the last Yellow Pages Series meeting of the season in Germiston next week.
The teenager unsuccessfully attempted to compete at the previous meeting in Stellenbosch on Tuesday as she increasingly shows frustration towards ASA and the IAAF who have yet to make a decision on whether or not she can compete against women.