As part of its ceaseless efforts to ensure fairer judging and refereeing, the World Taekwondo Federation will adopt an electronic protector system in the taekwondo competition at the 2012 London Olympic Games.
To do so, the WTF will set up an ad-hoc committee to deal with all the procedural and technical aspects regarding the use of electronic protectors. Prior to the London Olympics, the WTF plans to introduce the electronic protector system at the next WTF World Taekwondo Championships scheduled for October 2009 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
It is positively considering the introduction of a video replay system at taekwondo competitions, which will enable immediate correction of the referee decision in case of controversies.
At a dinner party hosted by WTF President Chungwon Choue for WTF Council members and international referees shortly after the conclusion of the taekwondo competition, Dr. Choue made such remarks, showing his strong determination for fairer judging and refereeing at taekwondo competitions.
WTF President Choue also said of the reversal of a match result of the women’s +67kg quarterfinal match between Chinese and British athletes due to an error in judgment.
“We made a difficult choice to correct the referee’s error in the middle of the competition. I thank the Competition Arbitration Board for executing such a difficult decision.” Choue said. “I also give my applause to the team of China for humbly accepting the corrected decision for the sake of sportsmanship and for the development of taekwondo.”
He said, “The action was an example of our firm resolution to make every competition results transparent and fair. Learning from the experience, we will do out best hereafter to assure fairness and sportsmanship in the upcoming WTF competitions.”
Yesterday afternoon, the WTF made a strong disciplinary action against a Cuban athlete and his coach for their unsportsmanlike behavior. In a men’s +80kg bronze medal contest, a Cuban athlete was declared the loser of the contest and the athlete and his coach approached the center referee and a corner judge in the competition area and physically attacked them.
The WTF’s extraordinary Sanction Committee convened immediately after the match and in consideration of the severity of the situation and with respect to maintaining the spirit of the Olympic Movement and taekwondo, the Sanction Committee decided first to disqualify the athlete and remove him from his Beijing Olympic ranking. It also decided to follow up on the due process regarding further sanctions on the athlete and coach, such as but not limited to exclusion form future WTF-promoted and sanctioned events.
Earlier today, the International Olympic Committee informed the WTF that it decided to take away the ID cards of the athlete and coach, so they have to go home today.
The WTF decided to produce strict measures to prevent similar incidents at taekwondo competitions, as such an unfortunate incident is against the spirit of taekwondo and Olympism, and against the humanity.
At the dinner party, Dr. Choue mentioned about his reform programs. “Since my inauguration as the WTF president in 2004, I have initiated various reform measures to correct the wrong practices and to raise the standard of our sport federation to meet the global standard.”
“Thus far, we have accomplished much. There has been considerable change in every aspect. We are now at the juncture of opening a new chapter to surge another wave of change in order to create a new image of taekwondo,” he said.
He said, “Our new tasks are to make competitions more exciting, to ensure transparency and internationalization of the administration of the WTF, and to continue transparent and fair competitions based on our experience at the Beijing Olympic Games.”
“For the cause of successful competitions at this Olympic Games and for the harmony of the taekwondo family, I have restrained myself to a certain degree from taking serious measures or resolute decisions against certain actions that damaged the image of the WTF and taekwondo,” Dr. Choue said.
“I am now saying it loud and clear from now on, I will not tolerate whatever it is that may hamper the process of creating our new image,” he said. “It is simple and clear. Going against the tide is no longer an option. The exit door is open for anyone who does not want new change for the betterment of taekwondo.”
Dr. Choue also mentioned about the inaugural meeting of the WTF Ethics Committee in Beijing.
“On Aug. 19, the WTF Ethics Committee held its first meeting with an IOC member as its chairman and four other internationally respected members,” he said. “With much discussion on its function and procedure, it concluded that any person or organization bringing disgrace to the WTF will be referred to the Ethics Committee in strict compliance with the rules concerned.”
Dr. Choue finally stressed that the global taekwondo family should concentrate undivided attention to keep taekwondo as an Olympic core sport and to maintain its Olympic status in the 2016 Olympic Games and afterwards.
Taken from the WTF website. www.wtf.org.