Monday, 1 June 2009

Tunku Imran all ears for succession plan

  Olympic Council of Malaysia  president Tunku Imran Tuanku Ja’afar  (right) with vice president  Datuk A. Sani Karim  (left) and deputy president Datuk M. Jegathesan.
Olympic Council of Malaysia president Tunku Imran Tuanku Ja’afar (right) with vice president Datuk A. Sani Karim (left) and deputy president Datuk M. Jegathesan.

NOW that the Olympic Council of Malaysia's biennial elections are over, a succession plan is needed and president Tunku Imran Tuanku Ja'afar has agreed to bring it up with the board soon.

Despite OCM's financially sound structure and the affiliates' faith in the current office bearers, it is no secret that the majority, except for Datuk A. Sani Karim and a few others, have been with the national body for far too long.

Secretary Datuk Sieh Kok Chi heads the list where, come the 2011 elec tions, he would have completed 19 years in office, while Tunku Imran would be completing 12 years as president.

Deputy president Datuk M. Jegathesan has been occupying his position since 2002, while professor Datuk Dr. W.Y. Chin has been the vice-president since 2000 and Datuk Seri Kee Yong Wee has remained uncontested as the treasurer since 1996.

"The succession plan depends on the individuals and we cannot force this. We will discuss this in our meeting," said Tunku Imran.
Kok Chi, who has previously mentioned the need to groom a successor, said that leaving OCM is not an issue but he needs to oblige when affiliates want to him continue.

There is no denying that these individuals have contributed well to the growth of OCM but a great administrator is also defined by the timing he chooses to call it a day.

There have been several who had done so in the past.

Former BA of Malaysia (BAM) presidents Tan Sri Elyas Omar and Datuk Seri Dr Abdullah Fadzil Che Wan were good examples where they stayed for a two four-year terms and then called it quits when it was felt that a change was needed.

It should not come to a point where pressure has to be applied from all quarters on individuals who have overstayed.

Tan Sri Hamzah Abu Samah stayed as OCM president for 23 years until Tunku Imran ousted him in 1999, while Kok Chi took over the reigns from the late Thong Poh Nyen after 31 years in 1992.

Tunku Imran, when it comes to principles, has always led by example and despite being a popular leader, also knows when to make an exit. The best way to leave one's legacy is by grooming a successor and with the vast experience the long-serving officials have, they should discuss openly and have a succession plan in place well before the 2011 elections.

While Tunku Imran has stated it is against the Olympic charter to interfere in the administration of the National Sports Associations (NSAs), this does not mean they should use it to not entertain the idea of giving financial aid to NSAs.

Providing financial support to NSAs is something OCM must look into seriously.

If the NSAs are ignored they may decide that it's time to reshape the OCM administration and could bring in new faces in the 2001 elections.


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