— Published 31 July 2023

IOC asks Randhir Singh to continue in interim role

The situation is becoming confused in the Asian Olympic movement. Reuters reports that the IOC has asked India’s Randhir Singh (pictured above) to extend his interim presidency of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA). The Lausanne-based body announced at the end of last week, via a short communiqué, that it did not recognize the victory of Kuwaiti Sheikh Talal Fahad al-Ahmad al-Sabah in the election for the presidency of the OCA, held earlier in the month in Bangkok. At issue was the presence on election day of his elder brother, Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahad al-Sabah, former President of ANOC and Olympic Solidarity, who was forced to resign from his many mandates in the Olympic movement after being convicted by the Swiss courts of forgery. The IOC Ethics Commission considered this presence to be clear evidence of interference, and banned Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahad al-Sabah for three years. At the same time, it refused to recognize his brother’s election as head of the OCA. In its letter dated July 30, the IOC asked Randhir Singh, a former Olympic skeet shooter who became interim president of the OCA in 2021, to continue his work until October 2023, the presumed date of the Ethics Commission’s investigation into the conditions of the last election. “Following the IOC investigation, we will work with you to implement the next steps of a roadmap to ensure the continued operation of the OCA in accordance with the fundamental principles of good governance,” continues the letter sent by Lausanne.