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November 12, 2015

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Diack resigns as honorary IOC member

FORMER world athletics president Lamine Diack has resigned as honorary member of the International Olympic Committee following the launch of a formal investigation against the Senegalese for suspected corruption and money-laundering, the IOC said yesterday.

Diack, who was provisionally suspended by the IOC on Tuesday and has also resigned as president of the International Athletics Foundation, is alleged to have received more than 1 million euros (US$1.07 million) in bribes in 2011 to cover up positive doping tests of Russian athletes.

The 82-year-old, an IOC member from 1999 to 2013 before becoming an honorary member a year later, was placed under formal investigation in France this week and questioned by authorities before being released on a bail bond of 500,000 euros and banned from leaving the country.

His resignation from the Olympic body comes two days after the publication of a World Anti-Doping Agency independent commission report on allegations of widespread corruption and collusion by Russian officials, including state security services, to cover up results of drug tests, destroy samples and intimidate laboratory staff.

The report also identified “systematic failures” by the International Association of Athletics Federations governing body, already rocked by the probe against Diack and other officials.

Diack served as president of the IAAF from 1999 until August this year when he was succeeded by Briton Sebastian Coe. His son Papa Massata Diack and three others have also been charged with various alleged breaches of the IAAF’s Code of Ethics.

Diack was a powerful figure within the IOC as he controlled the flagship sport of the Olympic Games for more than 15 years, with athletics also a big beneficiary.


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