South African Athletics
ASA still wallowing in debt
Johannesburg - Three weeks since provinces deposed the Athletics SA (ASA) board, the embattling federation is still reeling from financial problems, the newly-appointed interim board said on Monday.
"The financial situation is actually far worse than we thought it would be," chairman Sello Mokoena said.
The seven-member interim board that was appointed at the annual general meeting (AGM) on November 29 held its first meeting in Johannesburg on Monday.
Daan du Toit was appointed the interim board's vice-chair.
"There is a situation of paying for accounts to the City of Johannesburg, staff compensation, other accounts, and legal costs ASA has incurred over the last couple of months, which is the biggest of them all."
Mokoena said the interim board had set up a committee to work out a rescue package that it would present to the sport department and the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc).
ASA president James Evans, who was removed from the board along with vice-president Hendrick Ramaala, contested the AGM's legitimacy.
Evans said the International Association of Athletics Federations' (IAAF) constitution made it clear that "in the event of a conflict that brings the activities of a member to a standstill, an ad hoc committee may be set up, for a defined period, to be in charge of the management of athletics in the country or territory concerned".
An ad hoc committee also had to be approved by the IAAF in advance, which Evans said was not the case.
Mokoena said they had followed the ASA and IAAF constitutions to the letter and said the interim board was legitimate as it had been mandated by the provinces though the AGM.
He said the IAAF was informed four weeks before the AGM that a motion of no confidence against the ASA board would be tabled. The same processes had been followed when electing new executives in the past.
"The interim board has full legitimacy based on that, and recognition by stakeholders is a process," Mokoena said.
"We’ve sent all the required documents to the IAAF last Thursday because they are an import stakeholder. We are awaiting their reply… as of now there has not been an official correspondence from the IAAF saying who they recognise and who they do not recognise."
Mokoena said they would arrange meetings with the sport department and Sascoc to inform them of the processes followed in removing the ASA board.