SPORTS Commissioned Datuk Zaiton Othman yesterday sent a 'love letter' to the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) which could derail their plans to hold elections on the eve of Valentines.
At the centre of a heated controvecy is that rights of women have been trampled upon, and the emended constitution does not have provisions that the International Hockey Federation (FIH) demands on women, as equal partners.
The SC's media statement gave two suggestions on how the MHC can wrangle themselves out of this mess, and the early indications are that elections can't be held as scheduled on Feb 13.
Zaiton's media statement read: "The Sports Commissioner has made a decision that the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) Extarordinary General Meeting (EGM) was held in a hap-hazard manner, especially regarding quorum.
The MHC have two avenues to correct this situation
1. Continue with their Annual General Meetion (AGM) on the proposed date of Feb 13 by using the old constitution or..
2. Hold another EGM to discuss amendments with the right quorum.
The old MHC constitution stated that every state must be represented by a man and a woman during AGM and EGM but that was not followed when the EGM was held in Johor Baru at the end of the year, where amendments were approved.
The old constitution also stated that there must be one senior vice-president from each gender, and 10 vice-presidents made up of five men and five women.
However, the amended constitution did away with that provision and stated that only seven vice-president's will be elected, two of which must be women.
Yesterday, MHC deputy president Puan Sri Raja Noora Ashikin held a press conference to clear the matter before producing the SC's letter.
"Some people have been trying to hide the truth, but the truth can't be hidden and it has surfaced today. I am not mad about positions, but justice must prevail and the right things need to be done so that this matter is brought to rest," said Noora Ashikin.
The deputy president has served under four presidents, starting from Sultan Aslan Shah, and is supposed to be challenged by Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad for the post on Feb 13.
"I have worked under many presidents and all of them respected the rights of women in this body."
MHC got into trouble for the first time when the FIH, in a letter dated Nov 17, and signed by CEO Kelly Fairweather, has stated that it did not agree to eight issues in the draft submitted by the MHC on amendments made to the MHC constitution during its EGM in Johor Baru in October
Among them were: Fairweather wrote: “In particular I have to point out that the new proposed amended statutes do not - 1) Have provisions for the suspension of members
2) Have provisions for indemnity of officials
3) Have an age limit for elections
4) Have a limit on the number of times a person may be elected to a particular office
5) Have provisions for gender equality
6) Have the new standard FIH anti-doping clause
“Furthermore I note that the governing Executive Board is not
elected democratically but is appointed by the President, which is not in line with FIH governance principles.”
MHC officials, when contacted, distanced themselves from this mess and said their president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah will make a statement soon.