Sunday 4 December 2016

OCI board should make way for new leaders, says FG TD Rock

Kevin Doyle and Alan O'Keeffe

Published 29/10/2016 | 02:30

Noel Rock, Fine Gael TD, has spoken out about the OCI Photo: Tom Burke
Noel Rock, Fine Gael TD, has spoken out about the OCI Photo: Tom Burke

A Government TD has called on the entire board of the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) to resign to make way for a new board.

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Dublin Fine Gael TD Noel Rock spoke out as details of a critical report into the council's workings were made public.

Mr Rock has been an outspoken critic of the OCI's long-term president Pat Hickey and he said the remaining OCI board members should follow the example of John Delaney and step down.

Mr Hickey temporarily stepped aside from his position while he is awaiting ticket-touting related charges. Mr Hickey (below) has repeatedly denied all the allegations made by Brazilian police.

FAI chief Delaney resigned his position as second vice-president of the council this week.

Deputy Rock said: "There is now absolutely no doubt that Pat Hickey has to go, and the board should follow John Delaney's lead and go too.

"It's time for a fresh start with a new board. This farce has limped on for long enough."

Consultants Deloitte stated in the report, delivered to the council, that the OCI had inadequate auditing functions and there was a lack of transparency in the running of the organisation.

The report, commissioned by the OCI to examine governance and management of the sports body, stated there was little or no attention to ethical functions.

It found the council had little or no information on "managing conflicts of interest, behaviours and ethics and roles and responsibilities".

Nearly all the sporting federations that constitute the council told the consultants that they backed limited terms, for senior executives. Those holding positions should be limited to two four-year terms with a third four-year term in exceptional cases. Mr Hickey, pictured below, has been president of the council for 28 years.

The consultants concluded the council appeared to have no strategic plan on what it was meant to achieve.

Members of the executive committee held a meeting to discuss the report on Thursday night.

Acting OCI president Willie O'Brien said afterwards the report will be reviewed over the coming days.

Mr O'Brien stated the consultants Deloitte will then finalise its report and it will be published soon after.

He said the separate independent Grant Thornton report into ticketing arrangements in Rio, when complete, will be sealed and passed to Judge Carroll Moran as part of his non-statutory inquiry.

The OCI stated the completed report was expected to be with the judge by November 15.

Irish Independent

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