The Turkish Ministry of Youth And Sports has suspended Şahin Kömürcü, the president of the Turkish President of Baseball, Softball, Tackle Football and Rugby Federation and vice president of IFAF Paris, for a string of serious violations.
Kömürcü is unable to participate in the management of any sports organization in Turkey including American football for eight months.
The Ministry’s 14-page document cites a litany of violations including starting bogus sports clubs and listing them as voting delegates at elections. Other violations included allowing teams to use players without valid player licenses. Some teams were permitted to operate without coaches or used coaches without coaching licenses.
Apparently Kömürcü also accepted payments from teams without a receipt and did not enter this into the books. One of the most serious was claiming at the last election that votes were not received by fax because the fax machine was broken down. But the court discovered that the fax machine has a memory.
As a result of the suspension, the remaining members of the federation have resigned and new elections will be held within 60 days. In the meantime, an interim body will handle federation business.
None of this will apparently affect the operation of the two Turkish teams intending on competing in the 2017 Champions League tournament, the Koç Rams and the Bogazici Sultans.
IFAF (Paris) issued a statement through Deputy Press Officer Dejan Vujanic:
“The Turkish Ministry of Youth and Sports is interfering in the democratic election process within the Turkish Federation of Baseball, Softball, Tackle Football and Rugby, which is IFAF member. The Turkish Ministry of Youth and Sports seriously violates IFAF’s statutes and independence of our member. IFAF does not accept any governmental interference in any of our members, nor do any other IF or IOC.”