Suspension of SLBA by BWF Minister should intervene to lift suspension

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By 2017-11-24

By Karuppaih Ramakrishnan

The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) has sent an official letter to the President of the Commonwealth Games Association Sri Lanka (CGA) yesterday, that Sri Lanka players and technical officials will be deemed ineligible until such time the Sri Lanka Badminton Association (SLBA) has returned to a governance and operations standard commensurate and acceptable to Badminton World Federation, Ceylon Today learns.

They further mentioned CGF had received a notification this month from Badminton World Federation stating that on 24 October BWF Council had suspended Sri Lanka Badminton Association.

This decision is to protect the autonomy of the sport and to protect the autonomy of SLBA from interference in its governance and operation. While under suspension SLBA cannot enter players in any tournaments conducted by BWF and other international tournaments and barred from attending BWF general election meetings.

The source mentioned CGF has a clear precedent in this regard based on past Games and other International Federations and as regrettable as this is for players and technical officials CGF must continue to align its good governance and best practice principles with those of international federations.

The deadline to submit entries by name for singles, doubles and mixed doubles events and qualification for the team event will end on 31 December and based on current performance, Sri Lanka is likely to qualify. Clearly however, the CGF will not process any slot award to CGA Sri Lanka should the Sri Lanka Badminton Associations remain suspended at the cessation of the Commonwealth ranking.

The veteran badminton player sharing his comments in this regard said, "The office bearers mistakes have now affected the present players and will affect our future players as well. SLBA is administered by the Ministry of Sports under Director General Saman Kumara. SLBA has been banned since October but still no proper diplomatic steps have been taken by him but attends international badminton events travelling business class."

He further said, "What steps has the Minister of Sports taken to sort out these problems. During the past few years SLBA was administrated by people who never played badminton so how can we expect development of the sport from them? They don't want to develop badminton but only consider their personal benefits."

"Minister should take action on this issue otherwise our players' ambitions will be doomed. The minister will also be responsible and answerable if our players are unable to participate at the forthcoming Commonwealth Games to be held in Gold Cost, Australia."

Lakpriya Edirisinghe and Marimuttu Agalya have been named as technical officials for the CWG, but CGF is planning to appeal the appointment due to SLBA being suspended.

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