N° 69 - Lausanne (SUI), March 2013
During the official transfer of powers ceremony, which took place in Lausanne on February 17, 2013 and which, for the first time, included all of the different FIG bodies, I took the opportunity to meet with the members of each of our various technical committees. During these meetings, I reiterated the core tenets of the programme that was approved by the 2012 FIG Congress in Cancun ahead of the statutory elections. This is the programme that the newly elected FIG office-bearers will be responsible for implementing during the current Olympic cycle.
It was a fitting moment to remind everyone that it was the electoral process that gave birth and legitimacy to the Ancient Olympic Games, which were founded on a wave of popular enthusiasm, and which made sacrosanct the absolute need to respect the opponent, and the principles of loyalty and fair play.
It was such principles, and the way that they shaped the Olympic Games going forward, that saw man transcend the primitive and embrace civilisation. This lofty message, human in its essence, has at its core a philosophy that cherishes human dignity, and that accords real value to our lives.
Sport owes its philosophical origins to ETHICS. In the case of gymnastics, a discipline in which results depend on human judgement, the ethical dimension assumes a ten-fold significance; for it is ethics that anchor and shape our thinking and conduct, before, during and after any competition.
Staying on the subject of ethics, we currently find ourselves dealing with some difficult situations, especially in rhythmic gymnastics in the light of the issues surrounding the intercontinental judges' course.
It would be neither permissible nor proper for me to express any opinion at this stage of proceedings, or to surmise whether their outcome will be positive or negative, as I do not wish to influence or interfere in the transparent process of the Disciplinary Commission, which will do everything in its powers to shed light on the true facts of the case.
This is a delicate matter, and we must avoid compromising in any way the evidence that is currently under scrutiny. Hence, it would be incorrect of me to offer any form of commentary; it is vital that we respect the principles of fairness and impartiality.
The Disciplinary Commission has already convened for several sessions and has now entered into a crucial stage of its investigations as it examines the most critical aspects of the case. With these investigations now in full swing, the Commission must be allowed to operate with complete freedom, and with complete respect for its neutrality. For this to happen, we must afford it time, space and the highest degree of confidentiality.
Regardless of the fact that this investigation has an impact on the FIG event calendar, the Commission must be afforded the right to work in an atmosphere of complete calm, enabling it to exercise maximum objectivity. Moreover, as FIG President, it would in any case be improper for me to interfere, either in the procedure or the schedule of the investigations.
I trust that the work of the Commission will conduct its work guided by the principles of fairness and justice, and will complete its investigations as swiftly as possible, so that we can return to focusing fully on our regular activities.
With best wishes,
FEDERATION INTERNATIONALE DE GYMNASTIQUE
Prof. Bruno GRANDI, FIG President