Rwanda Cycling federation President Aimable Bayingana has calmly apologized for all the wrongs and conflicts that may have been caused by him or his actions while running the cycling governing body and promised to have all worries repaired, Taarifa reports.
Last month specifically on October 22nd the first and second Vice Presidents of the Federation- Benoit Munyankindi and Francois Karangwa wrote a three-page letter requesting that their boss be summoned to the conflict management committee to address a pile of managerial wrongs.
Bayingana is being accused of creating a bad atmosphere in the federation including single handedly authorising procurement of items without consent of other officials. He is also blamed for delayed Frais de mission funds for cyclists and the issue of an official holding two conflicting positions.
On November 8th, the Conflict Management Commission summoned Bayingana for a special hearing presided over by President Jean Pierre Nkurunziza from the Ombudsman office.
A reliable source privy with internal dynamics of the federation told Taarifa that Bayingana appeared before the committee composed but the back and forth engagements turned tense and later calmed down and ended well.
Despite all that had appeared in a Press release seemingly denying any wrongs or conflict within the federation after the Taarifa story published on November 4th, Bayingana is described to have looked very collected before the committee.
This meeting according to our source lasted for six straight hours starting from 4Pm to 9Pm on Friday 8th four days after Taarifa had dared report such matters of the federation previously considered untouchable. The story is said to have raffled feathers within the federation until today.
It is also the first time the committee had convened because in the previous situations no lower official in the federation would risk holding their ground against any dissatisfaction within the federation.
While before the committee, Bayingana was asked to explain dozens of issues some of which angered him leading to an exchange of very hot words but the arbitrator took charge of the situation very professionally.
“He admitted that it was wrong to bring 26 sports bicycles in October (less than 250 kg) in a container but said he paid shipping costs for his boat. However no details on which proportion. He could not explain why he took decision to buy these bicycles without informing his committee,” said our source on condition of anonymity.
According to Maersk the world’s largest shipping firm, a container can carry a total weight of 28690kg and it would cost $4000 shipping from Europe to Dar es Salaam and an extra $5,000 to deliver the container to Kigali by road. This requires a total of almost $9000 excluding other extra handling charges.
Bayingana is said to have controversially spent $10,000 to clear his cargo container last month which also carried other personal items including a speed boat. Federation sources say this is the second time.
When Taarifa broke the story after a month-long investigation, Bayingana pulled down his Facebook photos while cruising on his Hollywood-like mini speed yatch, a clear indication that there is something fishy about his acquisition.
Our snoops have observed that Bayingana is very furious and wants to know how the letter authored by the two vice presidents found its way into the hands of Police and media and warned that sharing such letters was a criminal offence.
More details also indicate that during the hearing of the committee, the two Vice Presidents told their boss that the issue was not how the letter became public but rather how he runs the federation.
However, they reminded him that he is the one that had previously taken the case to police and asked him to stick to the purpose of the meeting. The conflict management team told him that 2 Vice Presidents can’t complain publicly if there is nothing serious happening.
The Vice Presidents are said to have informed their boss that athletes will not be allowed to engage in any cycling competitions unless their Frais de mission funds are provided on time. The VPs emphasized to him that their athletes must be at the center of all action.
Bayingana is also said to have told the Vice Presidents that he promises to organize a general assembly as soon as possible to address issues raised and find a way to fix them.
Before the conflict management committee, Bayingana promised to be more transparent and involve all stakeholders in decision making process. However he repeatedly asked why people are suddenly interested in the way he is doing business.
On the most sensitive issue that involves money, Bayingana told his assistants that he will now let the tender committee work and that the Secretary General will no longer concurrently hold the Managing Director position.
He openly admitted that it was a mistake to bring bikes and boats in the same cargo container without prior permission from the board. That the board will be involved in all decisions.
However, the Federation President also has been overheard telling media that those criticizing him are against cycling development in Rwanda. He told the media on Thursday that those criticizing him may harm Rwanda’s chance of organising the UCI championship in 2025.