By Dr. Thilo Pachmann & Alexander Theiler, Pachmann Attorneys at Law, Zurich, Switzerland
The saga of troubles at the top of the World Governing Body of Boxing (AIBA) continues and has taken a surprising turn!
The AIBA President, Ching-Kuo Wu, has been suspended by the AIBA Internal Disciplinary Commission, with immediate effect, in the wake of the already long-running allegations of his financial mismanagement.
This decision came only a few days after a Swiss State Court (The District Court of Lausanne) rejected an identical request by the so-called Interim Management Committee (IMC) to remove Wu. The AIBA Disciplinary Commission voted unanimously against Wu, with no internal right of appeal. However, this interim suspension will only be finally considered at the conclusion of the Disciplinary Commission’s proceedings on the complaint case.
The Disciplinary Commission stated that its decision followed a Brief of Complaint on 1 October 2017 from eleven members of the AIBA Executive Committee and Wu was found in breach of several disciplinary codes and statutes. The statement then listed the four main complaints against WU:
- his attempt to dismiss opponents on the Executive Commission;
- taking commercial decisions without approval;
- misleading the media and National Federations about AIBA’s finances; and finally
- blocking an attempt to organise a vote of no-confidence against Wu.
He is also alleged to have accumulated debts of 15 Million Swiss Francs for the organisation, due to poor financial management and auditing. AIBA is now on what the Disciplinary Commission describes as “the verge of bankruptcy.”
According to the official AIBA statement:
“Dr Wu is currently contesting the decision [of the Disciplinary Commission] in the Swiss Court, citing an alleged failure by the Commission to follow due process in reaching its conclusion”.
But with this latest development, Wu’s turbulent 11-year reign is most likely to come to a definitive end.
Despite the provisional suspension as AIBA President, WU still holds a position on the Executive Board of the IOC and he served on the Evaluation Committee for the 2016 Rio Games.
Meanwhile, a majority vote by email among AIBA Executive Committee members has confirmed Italy’s Franco Falcinelli as acting Interim President in place of the suspended Wu, even though criminal proceedings have been initiated against him in the Summer in the follow-up to the one-week shutdown of AIBA’s headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, when Swiss police were called to intervene at the scene. However, there is no further news on these criminal proceedings, which may mean that they have been discontinued.
As already announced several times, a long-awaited AIBA Extraordinary Congress is due to be held next month with all the Federations invited and a vote deciding Wu’s fate. With this recent decision by the Disciplinary Commission, it is more unrealistic than ever before that Wu will receive the backing required to remain at the top of the organisation.
The Authors may be contacted by e-mail at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ and ‘email@example.com’