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AIBA and Sport England will attend the ABAE’s Extraordinary General Meeting



AIBA and Sport England will attend the ABAE’s Extraordinary General Meeting to ensure voting members understand the consequences of the decisions they will take

AIBA and Sport England have confirmed they will attend the Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of the Amateur Boxing Association of England (ABAE) this Sunday (24 November 2013) to ensure that voting members are not in any doubt of the ramifications of the make-or-break decision they will take on-the-day.

The EGM will vote on whether to accept or reject new Articles of Association and a new Board of Directors for the ABAE.

AIBA and Sport England have both stated publicly that they regard acceptance of both the new Articles and the new Board as part of a package of ‘compliance’ and ‘modernisation’ reforms and anything other than a vote to accept both the new Articles and Board at the EGM will lead to punitive action against the ABAE. A rejection of either and a ‘split vote’, which accepts the Articles but rejects the Board, will not be acceptable and will have negative consequences.

AIBA will take disciplinary action against the ABAE, which precedent indicates, will lead to English boxers, at all levels, being excluded indefinitely from international competition. Sport England will immediately withdraw the £5 million of funding that it has committed to the ABAE.

AIBA’s Legal Department confirmed: “AIBA’s position is that the resolution (to remove the new Board) goes against the Compliance Committee recommendations. The membership and the appointment of the new Board members was recommended by the Compliance Committee and approved by AIBA. Therefore, if the resolution (to remove the new Board) were to be passed, the matter would need to be referred back to the AIBA Disciplinary Commission for further action. The Disciplinary Commission has the power to impose further sanctions including making a recommendation to the AIBA Executive Committee for the exclusion of ABAE.”

Phil Smith, Director of Sport at Sport England said: “All of the resolutions to be considered at the Extraordinary General Meeting of the Company on 24 November 2013 must be passed for the ABAE to meet the conditions of its funding agreement. This includes not just accepting the amended Articles of Association but also ratifying the composition of the new Board. If these changes are blocked, sadly we will have to withdraw funding to the ABAE with immediate effect. Furthermore, the ABAE’s ability to apply for Sport England funding in the future will be severely compromised.”

The Board of the ABAE said: “We welcome the decisions of AIBA and Sport England to attend on the day when they will make their positions clear to the people who will be voting on the resolutions. These are make-or-break decisions for the future of boxing in England and it is very important that the individuals that will be casting the votes fully understand the ramifications of their actions and the impact they will have on boxers, coaches, volunteers and clubs throughout England.

“This is a critical moment for boxing in England which could result in the destruction of the sport at the grassroots and has the potential to affect every member at every club. The decision of the EGM should reflect the opinions of the membership and we urge all clubs, coaches, boxers and volunteers to make their views known to the Secretaries of their Regional Associations and ensure that their voice is heard at this critically important time for the sport.”

Any clubs or members that would like further information about the EGM should contact their local Club Support Officer or the ABAE at enquiries@abae.org.uk or via its Freephone helpline 0800 023 2692.

A Briefing Document which has been sent to clubs to explain the ramifications of the decisions is available at http://www.abae.co.uk/aba/index.cfm/news/briefing-note-for-boxing-clubs-the-position-of-aiba-on-proposed-changes-to-the-abaee28099s-articles-of-association-and-board-of-directors/.