Tuesday 21 February 2012 | Published in Regional
Dissatisfaction with the way the Cook Islands Sports and National Olympic Committee (CISNOC) manages its finance has resulted in threats of legal action by the tennis and triathlon codes.
Both the tennis and triathlon codes confirm they have threatened to make an application with the high court for the winding-up of CISNOC and believe that the sports body’s commitment to paying out Olympic code funding is a result of its anxiety over possible legal action.
Minister of finance and sport Mark Brown believes that legal proceedings against CISNOC may have unintended longer term impacts including the worst case scenario of losing the national sports body’s International Olympic Committee membership.
“If we were to lose our privilege of competing at the Olympic and Commonwealth Games then it would be a backward step for sports generally in this country,” says Brown.
“Being a member of the IOC and CGF provides the Cook Islands with an additional funding stream for sports, in the absence of those funding streams there would be an expectation rightly or wrongly that government would pick up the tab.
“The budget cannot pick this up as the government already operates under enormous pressure in delivering public priorities.
“The government is keen to avoid this scenario by helping CISNOC improve its financial management,” adds Brown.
Brown says that even with the progressive improvements made, it is understandable that the broader membership of CISNOC, the sporting federations themselves, may be frustrated that more change is needed now.
“Government cannot direct changes to CISNOC, only the members of CISNOC can.”
Brown is encouraging all national federations and sports people that feel aggrieved by the woeful state of finance within the sport body to attend the CISNOC special meeting on February 29 and the national sport body’s annual general meeting on May 4.
“All codes are encouraged to attend that meeting and demonstrate their rights as members to ultimately make changes it feels are necessary.”