Ignatius Leong has withdrawn as a candidate for FIDE President, thus assuring the re-election of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. The news is at:
What is surprising is how cheaply Leong sold out the chess-playing free world. In return for withdrawing as a candidate for FIDE President, Leong will be appointed a Vice-President of FIDE, a position with absolutely no authority. Few will doubt, of course, that in return for withdrawing, Leong will also receive a cash payment under the table. This is the way Kirsan Ilyumzhinov is known to operate. Sorry, Ignatius, but he who lies with dogs gets up with fleas. Kirsan is known for paying bribes, and if you do not get a sizable amount, you are just a fool.
Nobody who knows Leong will be terribly surprised. He has done this many times before. In the 1988 World Chess Olympiad in Saloniki, Greece, Leong submitted a bid for either the 1994 or 1996 World Chess Olympiad, in direct opposition to George Makropoulos, who claimed that the Olympiad for those two years had already been awarded to Greece.
Almost nobody in Saloniki was happy with the treatment they had received at the Olympiad and nobody wanted to be forced to return there two more times. However, just as Leong's bid was gaining momentum and seemed on the verge of being accepted, Leong backed out. Meanwhile, I, Sam Sloan, was circulating a petition on behalf of Leong. Many delegates had signed it. Then, Leong went up on the dias, asked for the microphone and denounced me for circulating a petition in his behalf.
Leong has done many similar things since, including switching sides at the 1996 FIDE Congress in Armenia and later forming a "World Chess Organization" which he later abandoned.
However, what Leong has done today is different, because in the past he only embarrassed himself in backing down on his own initiatives. This time, he has embarrassed the entire free world chess community. The USA, for example, was on the verge of declaring a backing for Leong. The USA would have carried many countries with it. In addition, countries like Norway, China, and Venezuela, whose delegates were on Leong's ticket, would have voted for Leong.
All of us who backed Leong have been left to twist slowly, slowly in the wind, whereas Leong gets to be a big man by sitting up there on the dias with all those really important people in chess.
Does Leong think that the World Chess Community will respect him for what he has done? Does not Leong realize that after this, he will have zero credibility in chess? One need only to look to the example of Lincoln Lucena, who on the last day withdrew his candidacy for FIDE President in 1986. Lucena was allowed to sit up on the dias for one day thereafter, and he was offered important positions in FIDE in return for withdrawing, but on the day after that, all this was forgotten. Lucena was shunted aside. Turncoats are never respected. Lucena has not shown his face in a FIDE meeting since and, if he did show up, nobody would care about him.
The following is the official announcement that Leong is withdrawing. It is accompanied with a photograph of the document which Leong signed withdrawing his candidacy.
Sam Sloan http://www.fide-reform.org/
Presidential Tickets Reach Accord AGREEMENT
1. After discussions and consultations between representatives of the two Presidential tickets now vying for offices at the 2002 FIDE Congress in Bled, we have agreed to submit the following joint proposal to the FIDE General Assembly in Bled.
2. For future elections starting 2006, the Presidential Ticket shall comprise the President, the Deputy President, the Vice President, the General Secretary and the Treasurer. Three additional offices of Vice Presidents shall be individually elected. This does not preclude the elected President's prerogative to nominate not more than two Vice Presidents as contained in the statutes.
3. For this year's elections in Bled, the two Presidential tickets agree as follows
3.1 The Presidential Ticket of Ignatius Leong shall withdraw in favour of the ticket of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.
3.2 Subsequent to the election of the Ilyumzhinov ticket, the President shall nominate 5 Vice Presidents each of whom shall be entitled to voting rights as well as other equal rights for Vice Presidents on the Presidential Board.
3.3 In order to maximize the benefits and abilities, which both sides carry with them for the good of FIDE, the nominated Vice Presidents shall include the following: * Ignatius Leong (SIN) * Morten Sand (NOR) * three other nominees of the FIDE President
3.4 The remaining three members of the Leong Presidential Ticket shall be jointly supported to run for elective positions in the Executive Board or if they prefer, Commissions.
This Agreement has been reached in good faith with each Presidential Ticket acting in what they believe is in the overall best interest of FIDE.
Given under our hands in Moscow this 21st day of September 2002.
(Signed)?????????????? (Signed) Kirsan Ilyumzhinov???? Ignatius Leong Presidential Candidate Presidential Candidate
(Signed)????????????? ? (Signed) Georgios Makropoulos? Morten Sand Deputy President Candidate Deputy President Candidate
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