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  • IBU Hit with Resignations


    (ATR) The acting secretary general of the International Biathlon Union tendered his resignation last week, amid reports of discontent at the federation.

    The IBU confirmed that “acting secretary general Martin Kuchenmeister tendered his resignation last Thursday which was accepted by the IBU Executive Committee”. The spokesperson confirmed three other individuals resigned for “personal reasons”.

    “Out of respect for the personal affairs of our staff we will not comment on the resignation of Mr Kuchenmeister,” Christian Winkler, IBU spokesperson said in an email to Around the Rings.

    “We can confirm that the plan for reallocation of staff duties is already well under way. Furthermore, the International Biathlon Union has opened a search to fill this position with immediate effect. Therefore the departure will have no major impact on the IBU in the short or longer term.”

    A report from Norwegian broadcaster NRK named the individuals as Marie-Luise Kreilinger, Kuchenmeister’s assistant, and Christine Schurz and Ingrid Lackner from the accounting department. ATR understands this leaves the IBU at 14 full-time staff members, and that the other departures were from lower level staff.

    Kuchenmeister told NRK that he resigned because of internal tensions within the federation, and a lack of willingness to hire him full-time as secretary general. Kuchenmeister took over as acting secretary general after Nicole Resch, the previous secretary general, was implicated in the ongoing corruption scandal at the IBU.

    “The situation in the office got worse, and since no one had the backbone to make a decision, I decided to withdraw,” Kuchenmeister said to NRK. “Surprisingly, more than me were dissatisfied.”

    Days after Kuchenmeister resigned the IBU said its executive board met in Vienna, Austria to “discuss the latest progress that has been made in its mission to reform and enhance the federation across key governance and operational areas”.

    The IBU began its reform process after the federation’s offices were raided in a corruption probe which forced out the former president and secretary general. Olle Dahlin, from Sweden, was elected President at the annual IBU Congress to fill the now vacant post.

    The executive board heard from the External Review Commission, which is tasked with looking into historic anti-doping, compliance, ethical and disciplinary matters in the wake of the scandal. The anti-doping commission updated the executive board on the status of the federation receiving potential LIMS data from the Moscow lab once the World Anti-Doping Agency authenticates it.

    A working group tasked with meeting with the Russian Biathlon Union to work towards any potential reinstatement said that Russia has accepted the IBU’s criteria. Another meeting is scheduled for the end of the month between the group and the RBU.

    Constitutional reform at the IBU could happen by the Extraordinary Congress this September the federation said.

    “We were greatly encouraged by the updates we received and the progress that has been made in reforming the IBU,” Dahlin said in a statement on the federation’s website.

    “We know there is a long way to go but we are on the right track. We are looking forward to receiving the recommendations of the ongoing reviews so that we can implement reforms that will benefit our athletes, our fans and all our stakeholders and put the IBU in a stronger position than ever before.”

    Written by Aaron Bauer

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