Olympic Committee Searching For New Boxing Governing Body, Rejects IBA

The Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) wants a new organization to govern boxing, ruling out the International Boxing Association (IBA).

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) dismissed recognizing the IBA in 2023 due to its failure to comply with widespread governance, finance, and ethical reforms. The IBA reportedly did not follow the IOC’s guidance on stopping Russian fighters from competing due to the war in Ukraine. There were also concerns over the IBA’s management under Uzbek and Russian presidents.

Russian energy provider Gazprom was allegedly providing finances. The committee voted overwhelmingly in favor of the ban, with 69 members agreeing. Only one vote was in favor of keeping the IBA, while ten others abstained. The IBA appealed the decision. However, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) upheld the IOC’s ruling last month.

“While this outcome is profoundly disappointing, we wish to stress our unwavering commitment to the sport of boxing and our remarkable athletes and coaches across the globe as the IBA starts its recognition journey. In response to the concerns raised, the IBA reiterates that it has already implemented significant governance and compliance reforms since late 2020. We are dedicated to upholding the highest standards of transparency and integrity within the boxing community while delivering world-class events,” IBA statement

The IOC faces a huge task to find a new governing body to keep boxing in the Olympics. The deadline for finding the new organization has been set at 2025. The IOC is currently organizing boxing events at the 2024 Paris Olympics. World Boxing, a non-profit international sports federation, will attempt to replace the IBA in time for the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games.

“After we waited for the appeal at Cas and the decision of the IOC was confirmed, we had no choice to follow our constitution. Now we are waiting for some alternative organisation. Boxing is a very important sport. This [World Boxing’s endorsement] is up to the IOC. We hope that the alternative body that will come into the picture will be representative of the real sports organisations which are the national bodies,” Francesco Ricci Bitti (President of ASOIF)

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