The IOC met today in Lausanne with a delegation of the Government of Sri Lanka, headed by the Sports Minister; the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka (NOC); and senior representatives of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF), the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) and the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).
This meeting was initiated to resolve a long-standing issue arising from the sports law (in force since 1973) and specific government regulations applicable to the sports organisations in Sri Lanka (mainly the national sports federations and the NOC). All participants acknowledged the very positive approach and goodwill expressed by the Sports Minister to address this matter openly and to resolve a situation whose origin goes back to the 1970s. The meeting served essentially to find a common understanding and establish the necessary conditions to allow for the national sports organisations in Sri Lanka to comply with both the laws of the land and the basic principles (in particular that of autonomy) and requirements of the international sports organisations to which they are affiliated.
The meeting concluded successfully with the following agreement:
- The sports law (in force since 1973) will be revised within nine months, and the specific government regulations derived from the sports law will be reviewed within six months in order to make them compatible with the basic principles which govern the Olympic Movement. To that effect, and to ensure proper consultation with all concerned parties, a working group will be established immediately between the Sports Ministry and the NOC/national sports federations, also involving the IOC (representing the Olympic Movement as a whole).
- All national sports federations will have to liaise with their respective International Federations to review their constitutions/statutes in accordance with the International Federations’ standards and the principles of the Olympic Movement. This process must be completed within six months under the supervision of each International Federation concerned, which will also decide, on a case-by-case basis once this process is completed, whether new elections will be required in the respective national federations.
- The NOC Constitution will also be reviewed with the IOC in order to ensure full compliance with the Olympic Charter and the IOC’s requirements. Then, the revised draft Constitution will have to be submitted to the NOC General Assembly for adoption, and be approved formally by the IOC. The new NOC Constitution will serve as a basis to conduct the NOC elections. This process (including the revision of the NOC Constitution and the NOC elections) will also be completed within six months. Until the NOC elections take place, the current NOC’s office-bearers will remain in place.
The IOC and all its partners are very confident that this process will provide a great opportunity for all national sports organisations in Sri Lanka to review their governance and operate in accordance with both the rules of the Olympic Movement and the laws of the land. In addition, it is expected that this process will establish a solid basis for developing harmonious relations and fruitful cooperation between the Government authorities and the Olympic Movement in Sri Lanka, with full respect for the autonomy, jurisdiction and responsibilities of each entity.