Fiji RU seeks to quell lottery concerns - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Fiji RU seeks to quell lottery concerns

13/01/2011 09:56:49 AM Comments (0)

Representatives of the Fiji Rugby Union will meet on Thursday with the nation's sports minister, who has demanded the resignation of its board and executive members over alleged mismanagement of a World Cup lottery.

Sports minister Filipe Bole confirmed to Fiji media the meeting will take place in response to a letter from the FRU's interim chairman Rafaele Kasibulu requesting the opportunity to discuss government concerns over the union's financial affairs.

Earlier this week, Bole demanded that the union's board and executive members resign after an investigation by the Fiji Commerce Commission alleged there were irregularities in a lottery to fund Fiji's participation at this year's World Cup.

The commission alleged the union had illegally discounted tickets when sales stalled. That only 47,591 of 100,000 tickets were accounted for and with only $US104,985 ($A105,698) in the union's lottery account when there should have been $US350,005 ($A352,383) based on sales.

The investigation also claimed lottery funds had been used to pay for union officials to attend sevens tournaments in Hong Kong and Britain.

The commission's findings were publicly released, and Bole said the government would not free 3 million Fiji dollars ($A1.61 million) in World Cup funding to the union until a new administration was in place.

Bill Gavoka resigned as board chairman on Tuesday but retained his seat on the board. Kasibulu, who was appointed interim chairman, said he would seek immediate dialogue with the government in the hope of improving relations.

Gavoka had earlier said board members could not resign or be replaced until the union's annual meeting in April.

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