ASA seeking Vermaak hearing

Johannesburg – Internal disciplinary procedures against Athletics SA (ASA) CEO Frik Vermaak are expected to begin in September.

ASA president James Evans said on Sunday Vermaak faced a number of charges at an upcoming hearing, after he was suspended by the athletics governing body earlier in the week.

“We're hoping to start the disciplinary process within the next couple of weeks, if possible,” Evans said.

“We don't want this to drag on.”

A leading local website reported in April that Vermaak was the CEO of Allegro Holdings and a director of Allegro Group Investments, Allegro Bridging, Allegro Property Services, and five related companies that were allegedly involved in the misappropriation of around R1.15 billion invested in a cash management fund.

Vermaak, an athletics commentator for the SA Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), was appointed as ASA CEO in December after a tumultuous two-year period for the athletics body. During this time three board members, including embattled president Leonard Chuene, were axed for the misappropriation of funds and their roles in the Caster Semenya gender debacle.

“We have discovered that (Vermaak's) involvement in Allegro Holdings was a lot more serious than he told us,” Evans said.

“The curators of Allegro have issued summons against him and others. They have reported the allegations to the police.”

Evans said Vermaak also faced charges of mismanagement of funds at ASA, among others.

“We have concerns with his management of our (ASA) finances,” Evans said.

“We are not accusing him of stealing, by any means, just mismanagement. He also appointed defendants in the Allegro case to work for ASA without clearance from the (ASA) board.”

An ASA board member, who would not be named, said executive members were not pleased with Vermaak, who was running the ASA head office in Houghton.

“Every time we ask him questions relating to ASA funds, he tells us they are operational issues and the board should not get involved,” the board member said.

“All of us want him out. We don't feel he's doing a good job.” – Sapa

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