The only rival to Gafur Rakhimov for the presidency of world boxing said on Monday he had appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the AIBA’s decision to bar him from the election.
The International Boxing Association (AIBA) disqualified former Kazakh boxer Serik Konakbayev because he failed to submit the required nomination forms from 20 federations by the September 23 deadline.
Rakhimov is therefore the only candidate eligible for the election on November 3 and under the AIBA constitution he would be elected by acclaim.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said last week it was “freezing contacts” with AIBA. Without naming Rakhimov, it expressed concerns with the AIBA election process and has threatened to remove boxing from the Olympic Games.
Rakhimov has denied US Treasury claims that he is linked to “transnational criminal organisations”.
Konakbayev argues that his nomination forms should have been accepted because they arrived at the AIBA’s headquarters in the Swiss city of Lausanne on September 24, a Monday.
He says that according to Swiss law, Monday should be accepted rather than September 23, which was a Sunday and so not a working day.
“I am extremely surprised not to be included in the final list of presidential candidates, and believe it is in the best interest of our sport to have a contested election so that AIBA’s member federations can choose the leader that they want on 3 November,” Konakbayev said in a statement.
Rakhimov told AFP in an interview last week that the allegations against him were “false” and claimed he had been framed by his political enemies in Uzbekistan.
“The truth is that I, of course, have never been involved in transnational criminal organisations,” he said.
In a further development Monday, the 25 European boxing federations met in Rome to discuss the upcoming AIBA meeting and the “threat of expulsion from the Olympics”.
The federations, in a joint statement entitled “Twenty-five European boxing federations meet to save Olympic boxing”, “called on AIBA to ensure an open, fair and transparent election process, overseen by the IOC, during the congress, and enact good governance procedures that reflect the best traditions of the sport of Olympic-style boxing and ensures that’s where we remain”.
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