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Anti-corruption body to establish new taskforces

Three new taskforces are to be established by the International Partnership Against Corruption in Sport (Ipacs) to tackle pressing challenges in the sector, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced.

Ipacs, a multi-stakeholder platform comprising the IOC and other governmental and non-governmental organisations, will focus on issues such as reducing the risk of corruption in procurement relating to sporting events and infrastructure; ensuring integrity in the selection of major sporting events, with an initial focus on managing conflicts of interest; and optimising the processes of compliance with good governance principles.

The development was confirmed during a meeting of the Ipacs working group in Paris. Ipacs was launched at the IOC’s International Forum for Sports Integrity in February. Each taskforce will develop checklists and pilot projects in their specific areas and will report back to the Ipacs working group during its next meeting in June 2018 in Lausanne, Switzerland.

“If you look at the recent major governance issues sports organisations have faced, the priority areas of our new taskforces are very much on point,” the IOC’s chief ethics and compliance officer, Pâquerette Girard Zappelli, said. “We need to go beyond declarations of goodwill and develop tools and practical solutions to help improve governance in sport and ensure integrity across all levels. The power of Ipacs is the capacity to act quickly at the highest levels of sports organisations, governments, inter-governmental bodies and certain expert organisations, which all have a stake in this.”

In other news, the final list of Russian athletes, support staff and officials who will be allowed to participate under the Olympic banner at the 2018 winter Games in Pyeongchang will be revealed by January 28, the IOC has confirmed.

The relevant International Federations will be informed of the individuals – who must prove they have undergone sufficient testing to ensure they are not involved in doping – by the sports entries deadline, 12 days before the start of the Games.

The athletes will be reviewed by the Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR) Invitation Review Panel, backed by support staff, and then confirmed by the OAR Implementation Group, which will not be able to add any names to the list, but can take them off.

The review panel, which met for the first time last week, will feature chair Valérie Fourneyron, the chair of the Independent Testing Authority; Günter Younger, head of the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (Wada) Intelligence and Investigations Department; Pedro Gonçalves, the Global Association of International Sports Federations’ (GAISF’s) Doping-Free Sports Unit (DFSU) project manager; and IOC medical and scientific director Richard Budgett.

“The Invitation Review Panel will draw on any available information from Wada, the DFSU and the IOC to make its recommendations,” the IOC said. “This is an ongoing process resulting in a number of decisions over a period of time in the run-up to the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018. It will be dependent on final qualification and the entry dates of each sport and discipline.

“Simultaneously, the invitation request list will be reviewed by the IOC Sports Department in collaboration with POCOG (the Pyeongchang organising committee) sport entries and the relevant international federations, to determine the qualification and entries status.”