OPINION: Athletics SA boss eligibility to contest Sascoc elections in doubt
Aleck Skhosana and Athletics South Africa (ASA) appeared to have toned down their fighting talk against Sascoc from earlier this week following a meeting with the Minister of Sports, Nathi Mthethwa on Friday.
Having cried foul over the nomination process for the Sascoc presidency for which Skhosana, the ASA president, was inexplicably deemed ineligible because he had apparently not submitted a certificate of good standing, the athletics governing body threatened to go the arbitration route should Sascoc not have reverted to them by the close of business on Thursday.
Skhosana, while aggrieved to the extent of terming the nomination process ‘contaminated’, was confident sanity would prevail and that he would be allowed to contest for the positions of president, vice president and ordinary board member that he has been nominated for.
“The manner in which this has unfolded, there is indeed manipulation of the process. I am not in a position to say who is manipulating the process. But the process is
ASA legal representative Dev Maharaj spoke strongly about their stance that they would not be ‘made to wait indefinitely’ and promised to take the issue to arbitration should there be no response by Thursday.
“It should have been a no brainer for them (Sascoc) to decide on this, so we will give them until 4pm tomorrow (Thursday) and should they fail to do so we will then take the matter to arbitration,” he said.
Instead, ASA have now extended the deadline for Sascoc to tomorrow afternoon - seemingly at the sports ministry’s instruction.
In a media release sent out yesterday, ASA said they had ‘now decided to give Sascoc until end of Monday to allow the board of the Olympic mother body to resolve the impasse regarding the eligibility of ASA president Aleck Skhosana to stand for elections scheduled for
The Sascoc board held an emergency meeting on Friday to try and reach consensus on issues in dispute before briefing Mthethwa on what had transpired during the nominations process.
The Minister has since directed the Sascoc board to continue its deliberations to try and resolve all issues and to revert to him by tomorrow to apprise him on the situation.
In holding back with taking the matter to arbitration, ASA is hoping that the attempts by the board to resolve the impasse by tomorrow will prove fruitful.
“ASA is committed to ensuring that all nominees are given a fair and equal opportunity to campaign for positions on the Sascoc board even if it means referring all disputes to an independent arbitrator to achieve that result,” part of the statement read.
The Sascoc elections are scheduled for March 28 and current acting president Barry Hendricks is contesting the top job.