LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — The International Olympic Committee said Wednesday it is “very worried” about the situation in weightlifting following a report that the governing body's interim president has been ousted.
The IOC was reacting to a report by the Inside The Games website that said interim president Ursula Garza Papandrea had been removed by the board during a meeting in which the American did not take part, and replaced by senior vice president Intarat Yodbangtoey of Thailand. The IWF has not commented.
That follows disputes among senior weightlifting officials about how to handle the sport’s longstanding doping problem and allegations of financial mismanagement and missing funds involving former longtime president Tamas Ajan, who resigned in April.
“The IOC is very worried to learn about the reported decision made by the Board of the International Weightlifting Federation to replace the Acting President, Ms. Ursula Garza Papandrea, the way the decision was taken and the chosen replacement,” the IOC said in a statement.
“The IOC enjoyed excellent cooperation with her during her time in office, and is fully supportive of the reforms she has initiated in the IWF. Currently the IOC has not received all the information to fully assess the situation in its entirety.”
The IWF has not commented on the situation and still lists Papandrea as interim president on its website.
The IOC board had previously warned the IWF that weightlifting's place on the program for the 2024 Paris Olympics could be brought into question if it didn't reform its management and crack down on doping.
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