The Elections to the National Olympic Committee (NOC) has got postponed day after day since 2013. The National Sports bodies have complained this situation is similar to ‘ Balagiri Doshaya’ (The famous Sinhala phrase meaning, postponing for tomorrow). Due to this present situation at NOC, a limited number of officials presently benefit. The Election was previously scheduled for December 27, 2013. When the nominations were called for the Elections, it was postponed for six months as per the orders of International Olympic Committee (IOC). The main reason given was, the Sports Act of Sri Lanka, has not been amended as per the directions of Lausanne based Committee. The IOC put forward three key points to the NOC and Ministry of Sports to fall in line and adhere to it.
1) To amend the Sports Act of Sri Lanka as per the aspirations of IOC.
2) The national sports bodies should amend their own constitutions and get the relevant approval from their international bodies. They should hold their own Annual General Meetings (AGM) and Elect office bearers.
3) The constitution of NOC too should be amended and the approval to be taken from IOC.
But though the three points key points have been laid down by IOC, yet they have not been followed up or still moving at snail’s pace. The argument put forward by national sport bodies is NOC, by taking their own time, postpone the elections to safeguard their portfolios. The other highlighting fact is, the officials (of the NOC) are no longer holding positions at national sport bodies, yet they cling to the posts at NOC. For example Susil Ranasinghe was the former Secretary Volleyball Federation of Sri Lanka, but he no longer holds that position yet he is the Assistant Secretary of NOC. The sole responsibility of amending the Sports Act lies with the Ministry of Sports.
When the inquired from the Ministry about the stalemate their reply was the amended Sports Act has been handed over to the Attorney Generals Department and they are awaiting a response immediately. The Minister of Sports, Dayasiri Jayasekera stated, “most of the amendments are done and very soon we can hold the Election at NOC”. But the President of NOC, Hemasiri Fernando stated, “we have received IOC approval for some of the amendments. But at the rate proceedings are moving, we can only hold the Elections by March 31st 2017“. The top officials of national sport bodies say, as per the present situation and the way things are moving, the Election will be never held on time and our chances to hold posts in the NOC looks very slim.