CHENNAI: Russian Boxing Federation (RBF) secretary-general Umar Kremlev has been elected the president of the International Boxing Association (AIBA) on Saturday. According to a statement by AIBA, Kremlev received 57.33 per cent of the votes during the two-day Congress attended by 155 national federations.
Kremlev may have ascended the throne but the path towards revival of AIBA is strewn with thorny issues. First and foremost, he has to get his team together and work to bring AIBA in the IOC fold. Wiping off AIBA's debt too is a priority.
Kremlev had revealed earlier that AIBA had a debt of around $20 million. Now, after winning the elections, he has said getting rid of this debt would be his first priority.
The 38-year-old's carefully crafted words after his win reiterate those challenges.
"Let me make it clear: the path of rebuilding AIBA is not easy. It will not happen overnight. We have to unite together and work with one mission, and one mission alone: rebuilding the credibility and trust that AIBA once had in the minds of sportspeople worldwide and that includes, of course, restoring AIBA’s Olympic status."
Though the IOC had been showing concerns about certain candidates, the AIBA went ahead with elections. Kremlev told during an interaction before elections that he would be aiming to raise USD 50 million in two years.
In a late-night zoom conference on Saturday, he touched upon most of the topics in his election manifesto. He emphasised on transparency and good governance.
"First of all, we are going to work on the reforms required by the IOC in order to establish its trust," he said.
"We will work along with the national federations. We are going to accommodate all the recommendations of the IOC as soon as possible and I think it will take a few months to resolve this. We will be fully transparent in the face of the international community. We will make AIBA work in the interest of national federations, athletes and coaches in order to make it the most transparent, clear and open organisation. We are ready to comply with all IOC requirements." he further added.
"As far as reforms are concerned we are going to help the national federations and provide them necessary assistance that will be supplied by the AIBA itself. We are planning to launch various programmes including upgrading skills of our referees and judges and anti-doping programmes. We will organise boxing forums annually and this will be done with the help of our marketing commissions and strategist." said Kremlev.