IOC must take responsibility for boxing crisis’

Former International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) Executive Director Ho Kim has admitted bribing officials to help get C K Wu elected as President, who he alleges was helped into the position by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Wu is now accused of allowing corruption to flourish at the IBA, which has led to boxing’s position on the Olympic programme being under threat after Paris 2024.

But Kim, a South Korean fired by Wu in 2015 as AIBA’s Executive Director after eight years in the role, has claimed that the IOC are culpable for the state boxing now finds itself in.

He has claimed that Taiwanese businessman Wu only got the position of head of AIBA in 2006 because he had the support of then IOC President Jacques Rogge.

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“There are a lot of dirty stories hidden but what the IOC is doing to boxing right now, they also have to do something to clean their position also,” Kim told The Times.

Kim was a key figure in the campaign to help get Wu elected at the AIBA Congress in Santo Domingo, where he stood against the incumbent Anwar Chowdhry, a Pakistani who had held the role since 1986.

“We put all the cash in the envelopes,” Kim told The Times in revelations that seemed designed to embarrass the IOC.

“Our team had been involved in this before and would tell us how much for each of the federations they believed would accept a bribe.

Among other revelations in the wide-ranging interview with The Times, Kim repeats claims in the report published by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren that Wu offered Azerbaijan an Olympic gold medal at London 2012 in return for a $10 million loan to support the formation of the World Series of Boxing (WSB).

In the end Azerbaijan did not win a boxing gold in London.

Kim also provided The Times pictures of what he says was a $20,000 bribe offered to him to manipulate bouts at the 2011 World Amateur Boxing Championships in Baku.

He claimed it was part of a cash-for-medals culture that existed in boxing.

Kim is widely believed to be one of the main sources for McLaren’s Report.

Wu has always denied allegations that he is guilty of any wrongdoing or that he was elected President of the AIBA with the help of Rogge, who died last year.

AIBA has since been rebranded as the International Boxing Association (IBA) but was barred from organising the tournament at the re-arranged Olympics in Tokyo last year due to allegations of corruption and financial mis-management. 

The IOC have since extended the suspension to the tournament at Paris 2024.

The threat is now hanging over the sport, which made its Olympic debut at St Louis 1904, that it will be dropped from the Olympic programme after the Games in the French capital.

IBA is due to stage a second Extraordinary Congress in less than six months on Sunday (September 25), a meeting that could have serious repercussions on boxing’s Olympic future. –

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