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Rakhimov, the only candidate to preside over the International Boxing Federation

Rakhimov, the only candidate to preside over the International Boxing Federation

The current interim president, the Uzbek businessman Gafur Rakhimov, is the only candidate in the presidential elections of the International Boxing Federation (AIBA), which has its Olympic future in question, sources from the entity reported.

The AIBA electoral commission rejected the candidacy of Rakhimov’s only rival, former Kazakh boxer Serik Konakbayev, Olympic runner-up in Moscow 1980 with the USSR, according to a document accessed by AFP.

Konakbayev, who had to rally the support of 20 federations, could appeal against this decision, but if unsuccessful, Rakhimov will become the president of AIBA at the congress to be held in Moscow between 2 and 3 of November.

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This situation does not seem to reassure the International Olympic Committee (IOC) which, in the face of AIBA’s governance problems and Rakhimov’s controversial reputation, could debate a possible exclusion from boxing at the Tokyo 2020 Games.

Unusual action, the director in charge of ethics and compliance at the IOC, the French Pâquerette Girard Zappelli, sent a letter to Rakhimov on August 31, asking him not to appear. “Only candidates who benefit from a totally clear situation can try to reach the presidency,” he said in a document to which the AFP had access.

In July the IOC maintained the suspension of financial aid to AIBA due to “concerns about a number of key points, such as governance, ethics and economic management.”

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The AIBA dossier will be discussed by the IOC this Wednesday and Thursday at the meeting of its executive committee in Buenos Aires.

AIBA is experiencing a troubled situation that led to the resignation of its former president, the Taiwanese Ching-Kuo Wu, accused by some Rakhimov allied officials of having endangered the economic situation of the federation.

On Tuesday the executive committee announced a life suspension for Wu for “economic mismanagement”, but he remains a member of the IOC.

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