At an extraordinary session of the General Assembly of the Latvian Olympic Committee (LOC) on Friday, delegates voted against the dismissal of Karlis Leinieks as LOC secretary general.
55 delegates voted against Leinieks’ withdrawal, 39 delegates voted for.
During the debate, lawyer Lauris Liepa said that after the resignation of the president, an official remained in the committee. Therefore, if the general secretary were removed from office, the organization would be left without legal representation, as there is no board of directors.
President Swimming federations Aivar Platonov, who is one of the initiators of Leinieks’ dismissal, read the statements of three federations – swimming, volleyball and cycling – regarding Leinieks’ resignation. Platonov pointed out that the board is made up of the president and the general secretary, and the two work hand in hand, so either both board members have to work, or none.
At the same time, he noted that the statements of the President and the Secretary General in the public space differ. According to Platonov, the LOC is currently “drifting” in the wrong direction, not the one members voted for when electing Presidents Georges Tikmers and Leinieks three years ago.
Leinieks admitted that he had not discussed several decisions with committee members, and that was also why he filed a motion for his suspension. However, he pointed out that he had helped change the work and direction of the LOC. He also recalled that in the near future the LOC has planned important events whose participation and progress could be compromised if the organization remains headless.
According to the president of the Latvian Basketball Union Raymond Veyonis , it hurts to hear that sport in the public space has a bad reputation, therefore, in his opinion, it is necessary to take drastic decisions that will create the right signals and outline changes. However, he stressed that the decisions must be legal and legitimate so that the LOC can continue its work and vote for the interim leadership of the LOC at the next session of the assembly in six weeks.
LOC members supported this proposal, and until the next extraordinary session of the assembly, the LOC board will continue to function as part of one person – Leinieks.
It is expected that the election of the LOC President will take place on July 11th. LOC members will have two weeks and four days to nominate candidates for LOC President.
During the session, the members of the LOC also decided that the president and the general secretary of the LOC would not be allowed to hold a paid position, member of the board of directors or member of the board in the joint stock companies with shares of the LOC.
LOC members also decided to give the Executive Committee the power to negotiate with other leading sports organizations on the possible development of a unified management and funding model.
The session also addressed questions regarding published information on a possible conflict of interest in the activities of the LOC President, on improving cooperation in the public sector of the sports industry and the development of a model of management, on the reminder of the secretary general of the LOC, as well as on the possible exercise of the functions of the members of the office of the LOC and the holding of the elections of the members of the office.
The initial agenda also included the issue of the recall of the LOC president, but Tikmers himself resigned last week, “assuming his responsibilities and also in order to protect the Latvian athletes and his family from behind-the-scenes intrigues and accusations. unfounded”.
After the resignation of Tikmers, his duties are taken over by Leinieks, who has actually led the LOK for a few weeks, since Tikmers is on sick leave after an operation.