What Does The FINA Executive Fear?


By John Leonard

Mr. Marculescu (FINA Executive Director) and Mr. Paolo BarellI have apparently decided AGAINST allowing the following ten key points (and 70 others) to be seen by the delegates to the FINA Constitutional Special Congress next year. (we know that President Maglione supports at least some of these, from his recent media interviews.)

So, exactly what does the FINA Executive fear by having legislative proposals submitted by National Federations considered at the Extraordinary Congress in July 2011?

Listed below are ten proposals submitted by the FINA Vice Presidents of Asia, Europe, and the Americas that were rejected by the FINA Executive and are not currently slated for review or consideration. There are more – these are the most significant.

And, why not? No good answer has emerged to date.

  1. The FINA Athletes Commission would be elected by their peers – the athletes competing at FINA World Championships – and would represent all disciplines and all continents.
  2. The FINA Coaches Commission would be elected by their peers – the national Team coaches at FINA World Championships – and would represent all disciplines and continents.
  3. The Chairmen of the Athletes and Coaches Commissions would be chosen by the members of each commission and would become non-voting, ex-officio members of the FINA Bureau (voice, but not vote).
  4. The FINA Executive would include six members – the President and the Vice President elected by the five Continental Associations, thus providing a direct communication link to the Continental Associations.
  5. The program at Continental Association championship events could be modified without FINA approval, to enable testing of new concepts, events, and procedures.
  6. The positions of Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer would be eliminated, in recognition of the current role and function of the FINA Office, which has made both positions unnecessary because these positions duplicate in-house functions/services.
  7. Continental Association elections would be conducted at their regularly-scheduled meetings in the period before the FINA general Congress, and the results would be ratified at the FINA General Congress, thus minimizing last-minute politicking.
  8. The FINA Disciplinary Panel would be governed by due process procedures that guarantee fairness (e.g., timely hearing, right to representation by counsel, right to be informed of alleged rules violations; etc.)
  9. A National Federation Member of FINA must conduct elections at least once every four years, thus ensuring democratic principles.
  10. The expulsion or suspension of an individual for ‘bringing the sport into disrepute” would be narrowly defined as “openly questioning the integrity of FINA or a technical official without factual proof,” thus promoting free speech principles, particularly for athletes and coaches who express their opinions about the sport and its conduct.

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