Olympic chiefs uphold ban on boxing federation

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Dec 07 2022 11:32 AM

A woman holds a sign in support of boxing at the Olympics Games during the the Executive Board meeting of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Lausanne, Switzerland 05 December 2022. Denis Balibouse, EPA-EFE
A woman holds a sign in support of boxing at the Olympics Games during the the Executive Board meeting of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Lausanne, Switzerland 05 December 2022. Denis Balibouse, EPA-EFE

LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- Olympic chiefs have upheld a ban on the International Boxing Association (IBA), insisting that the "drastic change of culture" requested in order to lift the suspension has not been implemented.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has ongoing concerns over the IBA's governance, financial transparency and sustainability, and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes.

IOC sports director Kit McConnell said the IOC Executive Board (EB) had sent another letter, after a first in September, listing its concerns to the IBA.

"As a result, the IOC is not in a position today to reverse its stance with regard to the suspension of IBA’s recognition," he said.

The IBA was suspended by the IOC in 2019 for multiple corruption scandals, meaning boxing risks disappearing as an Olympic sport after Paris 2024.

Boxing went ahead in the Covid-delayed Tokyo Olympics after the IOC stepped in to ensure the qualification criteria. The same will happen for Paris 2024.

But there was a sharp warning for the sport beyond then.

"Boxing is currently not included in the initial sports programme of the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028," the IOC letter to the IBA read.

"If a decision had to be taken today regarding the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028, the IOC EB would not be able to recommend the IOC Session to include boxing in the sports program under the authority of the IBA as IBA has not demonstrated that it has successfully addressed the ongoing concerns around its governance, its financial transparency and sustainability and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes."

The IOC said it would continue to monitor the evolution of IBA's "practices and activities as well as of the boxing community at large, and, on the basis of the developments, will consider taking a decision regarding IBA’s recognition at the appropriate time".


© Agence France-Presse