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International Games
Thursday, November 12, 2020
AIBA Election Committee Approves Presidential Candidate Field

The International Boxing Association's (AIBA) Election Committee has confirmed all seven candidates for the Presidential election have been approved to stand at the virtual Congress on December 12th and 13th.

The packed field includes Asian Boxing Confederation President Anas Al Otaiba from the United Arab Emirates, Russian Boxing Federation secretary-general Umar Kremlev and Azerbaijan's Suleyman Mikayilov.

AIBA's Interim President Mohamed Moustahsane, who is also President of the African Boxing Confederation, was a surprise last-minute candidate after meeting the November 2 deadline for nominations.

The list of candidates is completed by Dominican Republic's Domingo Solano, Germany's Ramie Al-Masri, and Boris van der Vorst, President of the Dutch Boxing Federation.

The build-up to the election has seen disputes emerge.

insidethegames revealed last week that Moustahsane had been accused of "manipulating" the statutes after he submitted a last-minute bid for the top job on a permanent basis.

Moustahsane is already in breach of the AIBA statutes, having been supposed to organize an election to choose a permanent President within one year of replacing Gafur Rakhimov on a temporary basis in March 2019.

However, AIBA was unable to organize a vote in time because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The eligibility of voting National Federations has also been an issue.

Ethical concerns were raised regarding an offer made by the Dominican Republic Boxing Federation (FEDOBOXA) to pay the membership fees of nine countries so they could vote at the Congress.

The FEDOBOXA – which nominated Solano for President – transferred a total of $4,800 to the Americas Boxing Confederation (AMBC) to cover the dues of nine nations – Saint Maarten, The Bahamas, Antigua and Barbuda, Virgin Islands, Dominica, Anguilla, Bermuda, Haiti, and Suriname.

AMBC President Osvaldo Bisbal reported the "disturbing case" of the payment in a letter to the heads of the AIBA Disciplinary and Ethics Commissions.

All nine countries are absent from the list of members eligible to vote in the election.

AIBA announced on Monday, November 9th that 143 of its 200 members – 71.5 per cent – would be eligible to cast their choice in the election.

This means more than a quarter of the AIBA members will be unable to vote, with 57 ruled ineligible.

Bisbal also accused Moustahsane of "manipulating the eligibility" of the federations in Colombia and Venezuela, who have been granted an extension to pay their membership fees.

Colombia and Venezuela have not been included on the list of eligible countries, however.

An absolute majority is required for candidates to win the AIBA Presidency, with the official who receives the lowest number of votes being eliminated in each round until there are two left.

AIBA has been without a permanent President since Rakhimov's resignation last March.

The election is seen as crucial for the organization, as it seeks to overturn the suspension of its recognition from the International Olympic Committee.
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