wakako yuki

Open letter to the Olympic Journalists Association

Ich habe seit Ewigkeiten vor, dieses Blog auch auf Englisch zu führen, weil ich denke, dass es vergleichbare Angebote, die nicht von Sponsoren der so genannten Olympischen Bewegung oder gar von Sportfunktionären finanziert werden, kaum gibt. Nun beginne ich damit. Die Geschichte, die ich gestern erlebt habe, ist Anlass genug: Denn ich habe ja mit Jean-Marie Weber einen neuen Journalisten-Kollegen in der Olympic Journalists Association (OJA). Ab heute wird es regelmäßig englische und deutsche Beiträge in diesem Blog geben. Ich denke, das ist auf Dauer spannender und erweitert unseren Horizont.

In der Causa Weber habe ich soeben diesen offenen Brief an alle Mitglieder der OJA und einige andere interessierte Kollegen, Funktionäre und das IOC Press Office gesendet. Let’s talk about it. Have your say!

Von: Jens Weinreich
Gesendet: Sonntag, 14. Juni 2009 13:30
Betreff: open letter to members of the Olympic Journalists Association

Dear colleagues,

I have had a shock. My head is spinning. My legs are weak, my brain spins. I grip the edge of my desk and croak for a glass of water.

Coming back from Coventry, England, where I attended the stimulating Play the Game conference I was greeted by the new directory of the Olympic Journalists Association (OJA). I do thank Alain Lunzenfichter, Steve Wilson and Adrian Warner, Wakako Yuki, Karolos Grohmann and Pirate Irwin for their honorary work in the OJA Executive Committee.

But something in it leaves me trembling.

In the new directory I found my name alongside a new „associate member“ of the OJA. His name? Jean-Marie Weber. In a moment, I’ll tell you more about Mr Weber.

But first, I am curious to know, who has elected Jean-Marie Weber? He has never been a journalist. But he does have one special role in the Olympic movement.

He paid the bribes. Huge bribes. Bribes for maybe 30 years to high ranking sports officials. Is this now a qualification for membership of the Olympic Journalists Association?

I can’t afford this membership fee. My children must be fed first.

Apparently he was elected in 2009. The Constitution of OJA says an „associate member“ can be nominated by the Executive Committee. The definition of an „associate member“ like Jean-Marie Weber is the following:

„This will be offered to any individual, newspaper, federation, television network, sponsor, association, promoter etc. … whom the Committee considers has made a contribution to the Association or whose professional duties impact on Olympics.“

Oh yes! Mr Weber’s activities have impacted on Olympic sport big time. Massively. He’s the man who bought sport with big bags of banknotes.

How about 138 million CHF in bribes? Or financing dreary publications like „sport intern“ since the rest of us were babies?