The Executive Board (EB) of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) extensively discussed at its December meeting in Lausanne (8th of December until 10th of December 2015) the issue of good governance and the protection of clean athletes in sport.
It addressed requests from a number of sports organisations which feel affected by incidents in some sports organisations and are concerned their reputation is being tarnished by generalisation.
Many International Federations (IFs) and National Olympic Committees (NOCs) have made great efforts to apply the basic principles of good governance in sport. All stakeholders of the Olympic Movement have, with Olympic Agenda 2020, agreed to apply these principles.
However, recent incidents have shown that, in the interest of the credibility of all sports organisations immediate action to reinforce good governance is necessary, so the IOC is proposing the following measures to further develop good governance in sport:
1. The basic principles of good governance, including transparent and democratic decision making processes, financial reporting and auditing according to international standards, publication of financial reports and ethics and compliance rules, etc. to be applied during 2016.
2. The IOC will initiate an independent audit system of its major subventions to IFs, NOCs and Organising Committees for the Olympic Games (OCOGs) with regard to the financial as well as the good governance aspects. With regard to all other activities of IFs, NOCs and OCOGs, Recommendation 27 of Olympic Agenda 2020 should be applied as from 2016. The IOC, recognising the independence and autonomy of the IFs, appreciates their support for this initiative as expressed in the IOC EB meeting and by setting up a working group on sports governance by the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF).
3. Given the continuing evolution of good governance practice, the IOC, only one year after undertaking further major reforms in this respect, has asked the world-renowned International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Lausanne and its Global Board Centre to undertake research into good governance at the IOC itself. A first assessment by IMD was presented to the Executive Board.
The IOC EB also welcomed the proposals by the FIFA Executive Committee for major reforms like term limits and other measures. The IOC EB remains concerned with regard to the ongoing criminal procedures in the United States and Switzerland, which according to these authorities could last for another five years. Since this could continue to overshadow the credibility of FIFA and affect all sport organisations for such a long time, the IOC EB encourages FIFA to take all necessary measures to clarify and resolve all the pending issues as soon as possible by further engaging with the relevant authorities.
With regard to the protection of clean athletes the IOC EB has confirmed its zero tolerance policy and expressed support for the authority and autonomy of WADA in the fight against doping. As the Olympic Summit agreed in October, the IOC is following up on its initiative to make the anti-doping system independent of sports organisations. The EB is putting forward the following proposals to the respective WADA working group:
· An independent testing and results management entity should be set up under the leadership of WADA. Sports organisations should transfer their doping control operations to this new organisation and make the funding available initially at the level of the present investment in the fight against doping. This organisation should also co-ordinate the work of the national anti-doping agencies to ensure a streamlined, efficient and worldwide harmonised anti-doping system. Governments, which are 50 per cent partners of WADA, should support this reform alongside the sports movement, both logistically and financially.
· Within this organisation a professional intelligence gathering unit should be established. This would allow WADA to be proactive. The unit should address issues that may affect the compliance of anti-doping organisations and anti-doping laboratories accredited by WADA, at the earliest possible stage. This would help to make all such institutions compliant at all times and in such a way as to protect the clean athletes worldwide to the same level.
· Sanctions should be pronounced by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). In such a way also, the system of sanctions would be centralised, be cost-efficient and lead to harmonisation among all sports and all countries. The current right to appeal such sanctions to a different chamber of the CAS would be fully upheld and guaranteed.
The IOC is convinced that the adoption of these proposals would lead to a more efficient, more transparent, more streamlined, more cost-efficient, and more harmonised anti-doping system. It would better protect the clean athletes and enhance the credibility of sport. The IOC strives to have such an independent anti-doping system in place from the Olympic Winter Games 2018 onwards.
Independent of these proposals, the IOC has already taken the first measures in this direction. WADA will lead intelligence-gathering funded by the IOC to make testing in the lead-up to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro as efficient and independent as possible. Out-of-competition testing during the Olympic Games will also be guided by this intelligence group from WADA, to make it more targeted and more effective.
For the purpose of protecting clean athletes worldwide, the IOC has asked the National Olympic Committees of Russia and Kenya, as well as WADA, to ensure an efficient out-of- competition testing programme for all athletes in all sports of their countries, which at this time is not in place. The IOC welcomes the steps already undertaken by WADA, the two NOCs and the IAAF to address all the issues in order to have all nations compliant with the international anti-doping regulations.
The IOC is urging the governments of Andorra, Argentina, Bolivia, Israel, Russia and Ukraine, whose National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs) have been declared non-compliant by WADA, to undertake with the highest priority all the necessary measures to regain compliance. Also, the governments of Belgium (Joint Communities Commission), Belgium (Ministerium der deutschsprachigen Gemeinschaft Belgiens), Brazil, France, Greece, Mexico and Spain whose NADOs have been declared provisionally non-compliant by WADA to undertake with the highest priority all the necessary measures to ensure compliance before the WADA deadline of 18 March 2016.
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