Ukraine’s Sergei Bubka retained his vice presidency position of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) yesterday after a chaotic voting session, which initially had eliminated the former pole vault champion.
During a day of voting — and revoting — because of faulty and slow electronic equipment, Lamine Diack was re-elected to a new term as president of the IAAF. Since he ran unopposed, it was the only clear-cut decision, while voting on most other positions will spill over into today’s second day of the congress.
The federations at the congress voted on the second attempt to give the Senegalese a 169-29 mandate for a new term.
Bubka first seemed to be eliminated in the initial round from the panel of four vice presidents for which there were five candidates. However, after the round was annulled he survived in a second round.
Bubka moved up from fifth to fourth position to get a four-year mandate alongside Qatar’s Dahlan al-Hamad, Britain’s Sebastian Coe and Robert Hersh of the US.
Canada’s Abby Hoffman was eliminated after he tied for first in the original poll.
Diack said the impact of the global financial crisis on the sport and increasing competition from sports like baseball and soccer are among the major challenges ahead.
He told the sport’s congress ahead of Saturday’s opening of the world championships that “the challenges are tough.”
The congress heard a financial report saying that since the previous championships in Berlin two years ago, costs had to be cut by more than 20 percent, from US$67 million to US$52 million.