asa maps way ahead

THE newly elected Athletics South Africa interim board will meet tomorrow and on Saturday to map the way forward for the controversy-ridden federation.

THE newly elected Athletics South Africa interim board will meet tomorrow and on Saturday to map the way forward for the controversy-ridden federation.

The meeting has been called by ASA administrator Ray Mali and will be the first one for the interim board elected last Saturday.

"It's a big clean-up campaign and we are going to start the process of getting athletics back on track after the Caster Semenya saga," said a top athletics administrator, who preferred to remain anonymous.

"We are racing against time as we were supposed to have started with the preparations for the Commonwealth Games in India next year.

"Athletics has always been the flagship of South African sports when it comes to global competitions. We are planning to continue with this trend.

"We are happy that companies like Nedbank and Yellow Pages have indicated their willingness to return to athletics. There are others who are keen to come on board."

Sowetan has learnt that negotiations with the banking institution that funded ASA's road-running activities in the past are at an advanced stage.

The interim board members are Hendrick Ramaala, Aleck Skosana, James Evans, Daan Louw, James Moloi, Pieter Lourens, Blanche Moila and Geraldine Pillay. It is expected that steeplechaser Ruben Ramolefi will also be co-opted onto the interim board.

Soon after the board was elected last weekend, suspended ASA president Leonard Chuene urged the South African athletics family to rally behind the structure to take the sport to greater heights.

Chuene said he has accepted and respects the decision by the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee to suspend him.

In addition to wishing the interim board members good luck, Chuene has also thanked all the people who supported him and the ASA during his reign.

"Athletics is bigger than an individual. There was athletics before I was born and it will still be around for another million years to come," he said.

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