(ATR) A former boxer in Azerbaijan and member of the AIBA Executive Committee is the first candidate to declare for the presidency of the Olympic boxing Federation.
Suleyman Mikayilov (center) has been on the AIBA Executive Committee since 2010. (AIBA)
Suleyman Mikayilov sent a letter this week to the 145 national federations.
The embattled Federation is currently suspended by the IOC from representing boxing at the Tokyo Olympics. The IOC took that action in 2019 following years of chronic problems with finance, governance, ethics, doping and refereeing and judging.
Current interim president Mohamed Moustahsane has not indicated whether he will seek the presidency on a permanent basis at a virtual Congress being scheduled in December.
Mikayilov, 58, competed for the Soviet Union as a boxer in his youth. Since 1996 he has been a international referee and judge. A lawyer by education, professionally he has served in leadership posts throughout the government of Azerbaijan, serving as governor for three regions in the country. He has been a member of the AIBA Executive Committee since 2010.
In his letter to the national boxing federations, Mikayilov calls for unity to help fix AIBA. He says that the federation has been on a path to “self-destruction” since 2018. In that year the IOC took its first steps to sanction AIBA, cutting off the flow of revenue sharing paid to the international federations.
“I want to encourage our boxers to be proud our sports again,” he says.
Mikayilov says he will eliminate the millions in debt carried on the books of AIBA.
“We should not be shy to admit our mistakes, but they are all in the past” he says.
Other candidates for the election, date still not set, may include AIBA EC members Umar Kremlev of Russia, Wu Di from China and Bulgarian Emilia Grueva.
Reported by Ed Hula.
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