IOC ULTIMATUM TO GOV’T EXPIRES TODAY

By Sulayman Bah

The International Olympic Committee’s ultimatum for The Miniter Jammeh GNOC closed bureau GNOC’s boss DibbaGambia government to return the Olympic House to the GNOC expires today, Foroyaa Sport can reveal.

The IOC gave deadline for the Gambia government through the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS) to return the seized Olympic Complex housing the Gambia National Olympic Committee staff and executive board, last month.

The ultimatum followed a meeting in Switzerland between the IOC, GNOC officials and government in a bid to resolving the long standing row between the pair.

In the four-point ultimatum, the Lausanne-based body, urged the government amongst other issues, to rescind the travel ban imposed on the bureau’s executives and return the Olympic House and other properties belonging to the GNOC, unconditionally.

However, it remains to be seen whether or not the MOYS will adhere to the ultimatum with the deadline to expire today.

The GNOC office which has been shut out of operation for four months bore the mark of desolation when this publication visited the place last week Friday.

Should authorities fail to meet the IOC’s demands; the issue will be forwarded to the international body’s general assembly whose decision will decide Gambia’s fate and membership.

The Sports Council though last month declared the office opened to ‘staff’ denying Olympic House board members entry, none of the bureau workers –seemingly unhappy with the decision – turned up to work, reducing the place to a desolate structure.

Series of negotiation meetings have been previously held in a bid to resolve the problem with little success.

Relationship between government and the GNOC executives has been at best tempestuous after the former slammed the latter’s presidential elections, held last year, as sham.