FINA President Husain Al-Musallam in Line for Olympic Council of Asia Presidency

Photo Courtesy: Asian Swimming Federation

FINA President Husain Al-Musallam in Line for Olympic Council of Asia Presidency

FINA president Husain Al-Musallam has been proposed as a candidate to become the head of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) if the current head’s fraud conviction remains in place.

Al-Musallam was put forward as a candidate this week at a meeting of the OCA’s general assembly, reports Inside The Games. He would replace Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, a fellow Kuwaiti who stepped down in September 2021 as he was found guilty of forgery.

Sheikh Ahmad is appealing that ruling in a court in Switzerland. If the conviction is not overturned and he does the allotted prison time of 14 months, OCA will need a new leader. Randhir Singh of India has led the OCA on an interim basis, but the 76-year-old is not planning to stand for election.

Al-Musallam, 62, is the OCA’s director general, a role he’s held since 2005. He joined the organization when it was founded in 1982 by Sheikh Ahmad’s father, Sheikh Fahad Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.

Al-Musallam is also the secretary general of the Kuwait Olympic Committee. Al-Musallam would hold both roles concurrently. (Former FINA president Julio Maglione, for instance, led FINA while serving as the president of the Pan American Sports Organization from 2015-17.)

The OCA general assembly in 2023 will be held in Kuwait.

Al-Musallam’s close ties to Sheikh Ahmad mean he’s not exactly above the fray that landed Sheikh Ahmad in trouble. Sheikh Ahmad’s conviction stems from a dispute between factions within the Kuwaiti royal family. He was, however, implicated in investigations dating back to 2017 that branched off from the larger probe of corruption at FIFA (Al-Musallam was a FINA vice president then). In addition to being he president of the Asian Handball Federation, Sheikh Ahmad was a member of the FIFA Council, an International Olympic Committee member and a reputed power broker in shepherding voting members to support, among others, current IOC president Thomas Bach.

Al-Musallam was identified as a potential co-conspirator in business dealings that led to Sheikh Ahmad being investigated. Though he’s been the subject of interest from international law enforcement bodies, no formal charges have been levied at Al-Musallam. He took over as FINA President in June 2021.

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Angello J Malefakis
Angello J Malefakis
1 year ago

The leadership at FINA is as corrupt and incompetent as FIFA which is the most corrupt sports organization in the world. Take for example, setting a world record in the world championships. It is 50K for a world record and 20K for the gold medalist. This is how much the CORRUPT PRESIDENCY at FINA spends in one week at the world championships for lodging for christ sake. Yes it is nice that they offer 50K! Why not instead offer 100K or for the top male/female swimmer an amount of $250K??? Come on FINA! YOU and I know this is cheap money from a cheap and corrupt organization considering the amount of training and effort that these swimmers put to get to the world championships and the Olympics and all YOU can give them is $20K for the gold medalist and 50K for a world record? I think and YOU know that YOU can do better than that. This is a disgrace to the sport and to these athletes. Finally, lets not forget that on September 2021, the Associated Press reported that Sheikh Ahmed Al-Fahad Al-Sabah and Hussain Al-Musallam have been targeted by the U.S. Department of Justice for suspected racketeering and bribery related to FIFA and international soccer politics. WELCOME TO THE CORRUPT SPORTS ORGANIZATION KNOWN AS FINA!

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