Lappartient warns McQuaid that Article 51 change could lead to suspicion and the perception of manipulation
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Saturday, August 03, 2013

Lappartient warns McQuaid that Article 51 change could lead to suspicion and the perception of manipulation

by Shane Stokes at 7:24 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
EUC president concerned about possibly legal action over Malaysian proposal

David LappartientEuropean Cycling Union President David Lappartient has written to UCI President Pat McQuaid expressing concerns about the proposed changes to the UCI Constitution requested by the Malaysian Cycling Federation.

In the letter, which VeloNation has seen, he warns that such actions could have a damaging effect on the image of the governing body.

The Frenchman also cautions that he believes the proposal, which relates to the nomination of candidates for the role of president, could also potentially lead to legal disputes.

“I know you are concerned to a democratic functioning of our International Federation,” he writes to McQuaid. “Changing the electoral process within the election phase leads undoubtedly to create tension, suspicion and a perception of manipulation at a time when we need appeasement.

“This proposal could also open the door to legal disputes relating to the election of the UCI President, risks that the lawyer of the Union Cycliste International, Maître Verbiest, certainly measured in his response brought to the attention of members of the Executive Committee.”

Last Monday the UCI confirmed that the Malaysian federation had proposed to change the current requirement for presidential candidates. At present Article 51 states that, ‘the candidates for the presidency shall be nominated by the federation of the candidate.’

The Malaysian federation wants candidates to be able to go forward if they are nominated by any two of the global federations.

Announcing the news, UCI director general Christophe Hubschmid sent a letter to members of the management committee informing them of the proposed rule change. He added that if the motion is passed, that the previous end-June deadline for nominations would be retroactively extended to Friday 30th of August.

On Monday, the UCI also announced that McQuaid had received nominations from the Moroccan and Thai federations. He had not previously indicated that he was a member of either of those, but in an interview with RTE Radio on Wednesday, he said that he was a member of seven different federations and considered that Article 51 meant that he could in theory have been nominated by any of those.

Many had previously taken the wording of Article 51 to mean a candidate’s home federation.

Indeed, McQuaid followed that route in the past, being nominated by Cycling Ireland in 2005 and 2009. He again requested the federation’s backing this time round, although it ultimately was not given after CI’s club members voted against it 91-74 in an extraordinary general meeting.

McQuaid then requested a nomination from Swiss Cycling, on the grounds that he has lived in that country for eight years. That was duly given, but is now under legal challenge.

In Wednesday’s RTE interview, McQuaid claimed that he didn’t need the proposed change to the UCI Constitution to be able to claim the nominations offered by Morocco and Thailand.

Lappartient appears wary about the turn of events. “I propose that any statutory amendment, which could be adopted, would apply as from the 2017 Congress,” he said, seeking to delay its introduction.

“Indeed, two candidatures for the UCI Presidency have been recorded within the prescribed time and in accordance with the UCI rules. There seems to me no need to open again the period of applications in accordance with a procedure that has not been approved yet.”

The UCI presidential election will be held at the governing body’s annual congress on September 27th. British Cycling president Brian Cookson is McQuaid’s sole rival.



The letter is as follows:

Dear Mr President,

I received, like all members of the UCI Mangement Board, the agenda of the session of the UCI Congress held on 27th of September, who plans to address the proposed statutory amendments issued by the Malaysian Cycling Federation and the Asian Cycling Confederation.

While it is logical and democratic to process the applications of the Federations and Confederations at the UCI Congress, I wonder about the immediate application of the amendment of the article 51.1 of the Statutes, if it were to be accepted.

I accept that the nebulae explanations of our General Manager, Christophe Hubschmid, does not undertake to serenity. I propose that any statutory amendment, which could be adopted, would apply as from the 2017 Congress.

Indeed, two candidatures for the UCI Presidency have been recorded within the prescribed time and in accordance with the UCI rules. There seems to me no need to open again the period of applications in accordance with a procedure that has not been approved yet.

I know you are concerned to a democratic functioning of our International Federation. Changing the electoral process within the election phase leads undoubtedly to create tension, suspicion and a perception of manipulation at a time when we need appeasement.

This proposal could also open the door to legal disputes relating to the election of the UCI President, risks that the lawyer of the Union Cycliste International, Maître Verbiest, certainly measured in his response brought to the attention of members of the Executive Committee.

It is also necessary that under the authority of the future UCI President, who will be elected on the 27th of September, a reform be engaged regarding the governance and the statutes of the International Cycling Union and particularly the conditions for the election of the President of our International Federation, as proposed by our colleague from the Asian Cycling Confederation.

Looking forward to meeting you soon,

Kind regards,

David Lappartient

UEC President

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