Monday, December 02, 2013

MAF to appeal decision

THE Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF) will file an appeal after the Kuala Lumpur High Court lifted former deputy president Karim Ibrahim's six-year suspension on Friday.

MAF president Datuk Zainal Abidin Ahmad (pic) said the national body will also review its constitution after the judge ruled that MAF could not suspend Karim as its constitution did not say he was a member at the time.

"We will have to look at our constitution and by-laws again and lodge an appeal," said Zainal.
"There is not much else we can do as we have already spent a lot of money, over RM100,000, on this case.

"This money could be better spent on development. It's a really sad case, and I was not even the president when this happened yet we are now picking up the pieces."

The sum cited by Zainal also includes a RM50,000 fine imposed by the International Association of Athletics Federations after six national athletes skipped doping tests in May 2011.

An independent inquiry set up by MAF and chaired by former appeals court judge Tan Sri V. C. George found Karim responsible for telling the sprinters to skip the dope tests.

MAF subsequently banned Karim for six years while the sprinters were given bans ranging from 18 months to two years with all results since May 2011 nullified, which meant a 4x100m men's relay bronze medal at the 2011 Sea Games was taken away.

Zainal noted that Karim did not challenge the validity of the inquiry's findings, only MAF's right to suspend him.

"We have had to rebuild a whole new squad after what happened before. It was not easy and we do not want our work to be disrupted," said Zainal.


By Devinder Singh

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