Olympics: Hunt calls for end to squabble over Olympic profits
Cahal Milmo is the chief reporter of The Independent and has been with the paper since 2000. He was born in London and previously worked at the Press Association news agency. He has reported on assignment at home and abroad, including Rwanda, Sudan and Burkina Faso, the phone hacking scandal and the London Olympics. In his spare time he is a keen runner and cyclist, and keeps an allotment.
Monday 28 March 2011
The heads of the 33 British Olympic sports will gather in London today for what is certain to be a fractious meeting as Lord Moynihan, chairman of the British Olympic Association, attempts to defend his actions in the increasingly embarrassing squabble with organisers of next year's Games.
Yesterday Jeremy Hunt, the Culture Minister, described the turn of events that has seen the BOA take their dispute with Locog over the splitting of profits from 2012 to the Court of Arbitration for Sport as "extraordinary". Hunt added that the affair, which effectively revolves around the BOA's desire to take their cut from any surplus before the Paralympic results are taken into consideration, needs to be sorted out "very quickly." That remains unlikely with CAS set to hear the case sometime in the next four months.
There have already been rumblings of discontent from members of the National Olympic Committee ahead of today's scheduled meeting and Moynihan and his chief executive, Andy Hunt, will face a testing examination. Hunt told the BBC: "It's an extraordinary thing just over a year before the games that we're getting into this sort of dispute which, frankly, isn't going to benefit anyone.
"The BOA is fantastically important to the success of 2012. They have got to look after 550 athletes, it's a massive logistical operation. Everyone in that organisation needs to be focused on that challenge. The second thing is I can't really see how anyone's going to be a winner from this because there is no more money.
"Even if the BOA win, the money's going to have to come out of another part of the sports budget or the Olympics budget."
On Friday Locog announced that Moynihan and Hunt were to be excluded from the organisers' board meetings while the dispute continued. The IOC have already determined in Locog's favour and if CAS does likewise Moynihan's position will appear untenable. Hunt said: "This is not the right argument for us to be having so close to having the Olympics and we need to sort it out very quickly."
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