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Home News Athletes Petition Launched for IWF Reform

Athletes Petition Launched for IWF Reform

The Chair of the IWF Athletes Commission, Sarah Davies, has launched a petition with the aim of pushing for reform of the IWF Executive Board.

The petition follows the recent ousting of Acting President Ursula Papandrea and will add to friction between the IWF Executive Board and the newly formed Athletes Commission.

This is the description on the petition:

The sport of weightlifting is in a bad place!

Just when we thought the weightlifting world was looking up with Ursula Papandrea as Interim President over the last few weeks the IWF Executive Board have made decisions which jeopardise our sport. 

The Executive Board met to discuss her removing the Interim President contrary to the terms of reference which put her in that role. In her place they have appointed Intarat Yodbangtoey from Thailand (a nation banned from competing right now due to anti-doping violations). This now allows them claim they are doing work that was already done or stopped her from doing. Ursula and others have worked to move the sport forwards in a hope to keep our place in the Olympic Games.

The current Executive Board is made up of multiple members from nations who have had their nations banned from competition in weightlifting or have had their Olympic quota places greatly reduced. If your nation is banned you should have to step down from your position at board level. The Board also only has 2 women on a 21 member board. There is no athlete representation though we had been invited to the previous two meetings, we received no invitation to this meeting, called by Nicu Vlad of Romania. As athletes, we are not represented at all on the Board by a current athlete and there is constitutionally no voting right for the athletes.

They also appointed Sam Coffa to the Executive Board now, as one of the authors of this current Constitution, how did he miss adding athletes representation?? How can an organisation that exists because of athletes not let them have a vote?!

The IOC has expressed their concern and the risk of the sport being removed from the Olympic Games is now even greater.

We do not believe they have the athletes or the future of the sport at the forefront of their decisions making. Please sign this petition to help push for a vote of no confidence of the IWF Executive Board that we can present to the IOC on behalf of all athletes involved in the sport of weightlifting.

At the time of writing, the petition had reached 4,500 signatures in around 11 hours.

The petition is Here:

https://www.change.org/p/weightlifting-athletes-bring-reform-to-the-iwf-executive-board

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Dan Kent
Dan is the Editor of the Weightlifting House website. He is also a coach with Warwickshire Weightlifting Club and a referee.

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