(ATR) Once again auditors for the Association of National Olympic Committees field questions about the status of a loan given to former Vice President Patrick Hickey.
ANOC provided the loan on "humanitarian grounds" in 2016 in an effort to pay Hickey’s bail following his arrest at the Rio Olympics. The money remains in a bank account tied to the Brazilian legal system, accruing interest until the status of his case is resolved.
It was the second year in a row that ANOC’s finances were scrutinized and the loan was brought up. Last year, Alfred Emmanuel, Secretary General of the St. Lucia NOC, pressed ANOC to find out if the loan had been written off based on the provided accounting.
A provision was created for the $425,000 loan, meaning that ANOC would bear no financial responsibility should the loan not be repaid, in accordance with Swiss law. Last year ANOC confirmed there was no collateral for the Hickey loan, given its exceptional circumstance.
Once again Emmanuel pressed leadership for information about the status of the loan, and if ANOC had sought its repayment. Even though the case against Hickey is still ongoing, ANOC’s Executive Board deferred answering Emmanuel’s question.
"What is the status as it relates to this current loan? Has an effort been made to recoup all of it at this point in time?" Emmanuel asked.
Beresford Giuseppe Angelo Caloia, ANOC's auditor from Pricewaterhouse Coopers, reiterated that a full provision has been put against the loan because ANOC is "not able to have documentation around the financial standing from Mr. Hickey".
"The executive board will look at a certain point if the loan will be written off, but because there is a provision there is no financial risk," Caloia added.
Emmanuel then changed the direction of his question to the ANOC Executive Committee, asking if they have "contacted Mr. Hickey and the people close to him if they are trying to raise the funds to repay ANOC".
No answer was provided by the Executive Committee. The 2018 financials for ANOC were eventually passed by acclamation.
Written by Aaron Bauer in Tokyo
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