Joe Caruana Curran confirmed ASA president for another three-year term
● Judge Emeritus Farrugia Sacco withdraws candidature at the last moment
Joe Caruana Curran was confirmed president of the ASA for another term after Judge Emeritus Lino Farrugia Sacco withdrew his candidature for the presidency during yesterday evening’s annual general meeting.
Farrugia Sacco was to be the only person contesting Caruana Curran for the ASA presidency, but after the latter’s speech to the delegates, MOC delegate Joe Cassar presented a letter to Caruana Curran handed to him by Farrugia Sacco.
It said that Farrugia Sacco had withdrawn his candidature.
In the letter, addressed to the ASA president, Farrugia Sacco said the fact that the financial statements for the Statutory year ended 30 September 2016 were not presented to the clubs eight days before the annual general meeting, constituted a violation of the statute of the association.
He also claimed that the financial picture from the 2015 accounts, was a very worrying one. He alleged that the ASA had made a loss of euro 232,368 in the year 2013-2014.
According to Farrugia Sacco, this has resulted in the Statement of Financial Position being in a negative balance amounting to euro 60,607.
And he asked: “What is the position for the accounts for the year ended 30 September 2016? Is it another deficit of €166,000, or €60,000 or other figure which no one knows but should have been presented to the AGM according to the Statute?”
At the end, Farrugia Sacco also complained that he thought it was not fair on him not to be allowed to attend the AGM, except during the voting.
Before the letter was read in full to the delegates, these were requested whether they still wanted to approve the financial report once again once it was not presented to them eight days before the meeting, according to the statute – they had already done so before. And once again they approved the report.
After a short break, a vote was taken just the same to confirm Caruana Curran as president. There were no votes against although there were four abstentions.
On his return to the room, the ASA president thanked all those who had shown confidence in his abilities to vote him in for a third three-year term. He said he was now even more determined to work on every aspect in favour of the clubs, also confirming that his priority will be swimming.
Alan Bonello was then voted unanimously as the new vice president/administration of the association.
Earlier, Caruana Curran made his annual presentation to those present saying that he considered this year as fantastic.
He went on to mention the successes of the national teams, especially the men’s seniors and juniors who reached the finals of the European Championships in their categories. “It is certainly not easy to be among the top 20 in Europe. But they did it and we are all very proud of that achievement. It was all due to the dedication and commitment of the coaches and the players,” he said.
He said waterpolo remained the more popular sport organised by the association, even if he was disappointed that the attendances did not reach the desired numbers, thus the revenue for the clubs was small once again.
However, he said he was glad to see the game reaching good standards, especially at national team level. “We have won a lot of respect so much so that even our main sponsors – Bank of Valletta – have just signed an agreement with us to have an annual euro 5,000 increase over the next three years. This means that from euro 35,000 this year, it will be 40,000 next year, 45,000 the second year and 50,000 the third year,” he added.
Caruana Curran also revealed that the association has just reached another sponsorship deal with the company DIZZ and is due to sign another deal with a company he did not name which wishes to sponsor the juniors. “These are all aware that they are putting their money in the right place,” he said.
He went on to explain that swimming needed more attention, even if it was evident that the hard work put in by all those involved in the sector was giving its desired fruit. He revealed: “We intend to send a contingent of between 12 to 14 swimmers to the Games for European Small States in Europe in San Marino next year and we all hope to see our youngsters delivering the goods over there.”
Finally he thanked all those who have backed the ASA during these last few years, from SportMalta, the MOC, the sponsors, especially Bank of Valletta, the clubs, the administrators, especially secretary general Rita Azzopardi, as well as the Disciplinary Commissioners, Appeals Boards members and the Council. He also thanked European body LEN and world federation FINA for their support.
He concluded his speech by saying: “I am privileged to have been returned to office for another term. I have not been perfect, but I have really done by best which, maybe, was not enough. I now think that if there have been any differences, these should be left behind us and start working hard together in the interest of our sport.”
Outgoing ASA vice president Simon Galea Testaferrata and Joe Caruana Curran reading the letter sent by Judge Emeritus Lino Farrugia Sacco about his withdrawal of the candidature for the presidency Photo: Domenic Aquilina