Sport Ireland CEO, John Treacy says it is the responsibility of the clubs, leagues and council members and the incoming board to ensure that what has happened within the FAI can never happen again.
Disgraced former CEO, John Delaney voluntarily stepped aside from his role this week pending an investigation following numerous allegations made against him and the association.
The situation is eerily similar to that of the OCI in 2016 following the Rio Olympics ticket scandal and on that occasion, members of the board decided to run again and while Treacy admits that is a possibility what is more important is that everyone takes responsibility in ensuring that a strong board is appointed in July who can lead a new FAI with reformed policy that the incoming chief executive can implement.
“That is a possibility, but I think you need to remember the clubs, the leagues, the members that are on the council have a responsibility here as well and everyone has a responsibility, it’s the organisation itself and the clubs and the membership needs to take their responsibilities seriously.” Treacy said at Sport Ireland’s anti-doping review.
“What has happened, can never happen again and what we need is a strong board that exercises control over the organisation and that leads and outlines the policy and the strategy for the organisation and the chief executive that comes in implements that, that’s what you need.”
Treacy is hopeful that in a few years we could be looking at a totally new FAI in the same way that the OCI (now the OFI) have put to bed the issues of the past.
The reason for their renewed respect according to Treacy is down to ‘real leadership’ and having board members come in who will step forward a lead a new FAI.
“What emerged in the Olympic Federation was real leadership and I think that played a huge role and people with high standards in terms of corporate governance, transparency, integrity, all those pieces are hugely important and that’s what we need to emerge as we go forward is someone to step forward and lead the organisation and a board to step forward and lead the organisation.
“That is possible, without a shadow of a doubt that is possible and people need to make sure they have the skills before they step on that board and know what their responsibilities are and I certainly believe with the right whip the right things can be done and you can have a good strong board and all those issues in two years or three years time you could be looking at a different board, that is possible.”
President of the OFI, Sarah Keane is one person who has more experience leading a new wave of sporting bodies than anyone having overseen and led both the reformed Olympic Federation as well as Swim Ireland and Treacy feels she is someone that the new FAI board members can look to go guidance.
“Yeah, I think so, Sarah was on the board, didn’t resign when the crisis hit but decided to do something about it.
“I think that’s a great example and that’s great leadership. She had an issue with the swimming as well and she led it from the front as well as chief executive and brought us a strong board and the support of a strong board behind her.”