Resigned officials of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) cannot attend the special meeting of the organization’s executive board on Monday, July 8, following a letter from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).
In a letter dated Thursday, July 4, IOC Director of Olympic Solidarity and National Olympic Committee Relations James Macleod and OCA Director General and Technical Dir. Husain Al-Musallam said that all eligible members of the POC executive board should attend the meeting on Monday.
However, the letter also stated that ‘all individuals whose position with the Executive Board is disputed and/or may be subject to any interpretation (namely Chairman, President and two Executive Board members who have resigned); the position of “immediate past President”; and the position of Secretary General) should abstain from participating in this meeting, to avoid any further disputes or challenges, and in the interest of the POC as in institution’.
Ricky Vargas of the Association of Boxing Alliances of the Philippines President Ricky Vargas and Abraham Tolentino of the Intergrated Cycling Federation of the Philippines recently resigned as president and chairman, respectively, of the POC.
Atty. Jesus Clint Aranas of the World Archery Philippines Inc. President Atty. Jesus Clint Aranas and Cynthia Carrion
of the Gymnasitcs Association of the Philppines also formally resigned as members of the executive board.
“The above-mentioned opinion would be consistent with the basic principles of good governance and would avoid any potential conflict of interests, or perception of conflict of interests, in particular if any of the individuals who have resigned are also candidates in the forthcoming elections for the vacant positions,” the letter read.
Macleod and Al-Musallam also said that involved parties should refrain from making their own interpretation of the applicable rules of the POC constitution.
Meanwhile, if the special meeting of the POC executive board will not proceed on Monday, the IOC and OCA said that majority of the Executive Board should sign a resolution to call for an extraordinary meeting of the General Assembly not later than July 18.
All pending issues, including the confirmation of the chairperson of the meeting and the proposal and appointment of the election commission, would be deferred and added to the agenda of the extraordinary meeting of the POC General Assembly.
“Everyone should simply respect the collegial decisions/resolutions taken by the members of the competent governing bodies of the POC, be it the Executive Board or the General Assembly, in line with the basic principles of good governance with the Olympic Movement,” the letter stressed
In a statement, Vargas said that he will no longer attend the POC board meeting due to the letter from the IOC and OCA.
“I was prepared to attend the POC Board Meeting on July 8, 2019, until I read the last letter from the IOC/OCA letter dated July 4, 2019, which I determined was unfavorable to my attendance,” Vargas said.
“I had hoped to be of help in fostering unity and clarifying several issues currently facing the POC but I will accept the advice from the IOC/OCA not to be at the said meeting,” he added.
In a separate statement, Tolentino also confirmed that he will follow the advise of the IOC and OCA, and will not attend the meeting.
“I will stand by my word that I will abide by the advisories from the gentlemen from the IOC and OCA who have been keenly following the developments here to help us find a solution,” Tolentino said.
The congressman from Cavite added that he also believes that it will be best for him to inhibit from the said meeting since he has already announced his intention to run for the vacated POC presidency in the upcoming election.
Tolentino also expressed his hopes that the problems in the POC will be solved as soon as possible.
“I am hopeful that in the immediate future, this crisis will dissipate, with the cooperation of all, especially our fellow sports leaders in the National Sports Associations,” he said.