Boardroom Battle

There is a silent battle emerging within the corridors of the Olympic Council of Malaysia.

Often known as the umbrella body for the national sports associations, there is no hiding beneath the umbrella as Board Meetings in OCM of late have been anything but cordial, to put it bluntly.

The battle of sorts is centered around the soon to be vacated IOC seat currently held by OCM President Tunku Tan Sri Imran Tuanku Jaafar who has to vacate the seat due to age restrictions by end of 2018.

Two individuals within OCM are said to be eyeing the soon to be vacated position and have not held back in scathing attacks against each other, undermining their responsibilities within OCM, more often then not putting other members in a difficult position.

And this battle has now moved from the Boardroom towards the affiliates as many are being caught in the crossfire, well ahead of the 2018 elections, put off a year to accommodate the organisation of the SEA Games.

That, the moving of the elections, was also another root cause to this infighting as it was not discussed prior to being brought up at the Board although it was later endorsed by the Council without objections.

Putting off elections on the pretext of Organising the SEA Games was a lame excuse as it should have just been said as it is – it is to  give outgoing president Imran his last hurrah on the regional stage.

Imran has been hands on running OCM in the past but of late he seems to have taken his foot off the pedal.

And this has opened up room for ” little napoleons” to lay claim towards authority of what once was a peaceful sports body.

Which leads to questions perhaps Imran needs to let his deputy Datuk Seri Norza Zakaria play a more prominent role if he is the chosen one to lead OCM come 2018.

However some quarters are not too keen to let that happen for fear Norza will cement his position and be the ” president elect” going into the 2018 elections. But is there any other capable candidate?

Matter have not been helped by the poor health issues affecting Secretary General Dato Low Beng Choo as she is overwhelmed by work, both locally and internationally.

She has been under the weather of late and there is speculation that it was due to her “indifference” with a senior statesman within OCM.

However that is merely hearsay as many take advantage of the situation to perhaps drive a wedge between those administrating OCM to their best of abilities.

It will be good if OCM will resolve its issues and although some civil servants have taken sides in this battle, they should realise it’s not “within their pay brackets” to determine who leads or administers OCM.

Working as a team, resolving issues amicably and putting the interest of sports as it’s priority has and should always be the priority of OCM.

Matters ought to be discussed between key members of the Board before being tabled at meetings and there should be a consensus amongst these leaders.

The sanctity of OCM is vital towards ensuring the sports remains what it is – fair and just for all Malaysians.

We do not need this infighting and in the process see our umbrella body being swept away in a mini storm.

Individuals will always come and go but the institution remains and thus it’s important that OCM keeps to its principles, never bending rules or shifting goal posts to accommodate the whims and fancies of individuals.

Work together or walk away, that is what should be the motto at OCM. It has such a rich tradition of good governance that personal interests needs to be cast aside.

As a reminder to the Board Members, please do not involve the staff of OCM in your battles as their loyalty is towards the government of the day.

The staff have served well, within their ability and their loyalty or ability should not be put under the microscope now, not with some having served for half their adult age at OCM. 

Let there not be a racial divide in sports, the country has enough problems in its plates already.

Show maturity and walk around with heads held higher, stop the infighting and back stabbing.

No individual can lay claim to success and it’s a team game at OCM.

Stand tall, stand shoulder to shoulder with each other and let nothing come in between your efforts to make Malaysia a truly great sporting nation.

After all you are the last bastion of true bravery heart volunteers that serve sports with sincerity and goodwill.

Let your deeds speak for itself, enough is enough.