Amending FIDE constitution immediate priority: Nigel Short

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Chennai, Dec 7 (IANS) Into the second year as a Vice President of global chess body, British chess Grandmaster (GM) Nigel Short said the forensic audit report would be made public in course of time and the immediate priority is to amend FIDE’s Constitution so that decision making is faster.

Speaking to IANS, Short also said that the 2020 World Championship match is likely to be held in United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The new team at FIDE led by former Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich had initiated a forensic audit to find out the malpractices alleged to have be done by the previous management.

Short, who recently shocked the chess world openly terming the All India Chess Federation (AICF) as anti-player, said the new team at FIDE has been carrying out lots of cleaning work and is transparent.

Questioned whether FIDE is long on transparency claims but short on walking the talk as the chess body has proposed to keep the forensic audit report under wraps, Short said: “We have not said it will never be disclosed. The audit report will be made public in course of time.”

The Extra Ordinary General meeting of the FIDE will be soon held in United Arab Emirates (UAE) to ratify the changes proposed to FIDE Constitution.

Short said, the plan is to reduce the size of FIDE’s Presidential Board to 15 from the current 26 as it is now unwieldy and difficult to steer like a rudderless ship.

While FIDE’s Management Board is compact and takes decisions fast, certain decisions have to be taken by the Presidential Board.

According to Short, as per the amendment proposals, some of the posts will become redundant and disappear.

The other changes proposed includes defining the relationship between FIDE and other bodies so that there will be clarity in the roles and relationship.

“Out of the total NCFs, only 40 per cent of them have filed their Constitution with FIDE,” he said.

Looking back at FIDE’s operations of last one year under the new team, Short said the house is being cleaned and the team is looking at players’ interests, much more keenly than it was earlier.

“We have more players in FIDE management now. There have been decades of neglect of players interest. However, we cannot tell the National Chess Federations (NCF) to mend their ways all of a sudden,” Short said.

To the query whether FIDE can only bark and not bite, Short said the global body can bite if NCFs continue with their own ways.

The one example of FIDE’s biting was the restoration of its ELO rating to over 50 Indian players. The ratings were revoked by FIDE as the instance of AICF nearly a decade back.

According to Short, FIDE has distributed to several NCFs over one million euros as assistance. The assistance is based on milestones achieved.

Short said the new team has fulfilled the poll promise of reducing the fees paid by the NCFs.

When queried whether the NCFs has passed on the benefits to the players Short said it depends on the latter.

“Chess should find its funds from sponsors. But for a long time, FIDE has been dependent for funds on the fees from NCFs, players,” he said.

On the FIDE target of securing five million euros as sponsorship for chess this year, Short said a large chunk of the target has been achieved.

“It is interesting to see Coca Cola to come in as a sponsor,” he said.

The other sponsors are Russian Railways, Twitch and SILA International Lawyers.

“It is true, FIDE is largely dependent on sponsors from Russia and needs to be broad based,” he added.

On the venue of the 2020 World Championship match, Short said it is likely to be held in UAE.

–IANS

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