29/10/2018

Federated Sports Court, the saddest elections

In Guatemala, the sports cooptation starts by controlling the sports elections. In the democratic sports processes, the managers are elected, they have the final word on the management of the resources allocated to CDAG, COG, national federations and associations. There is an arbitrator, Federated Sports Court (TEDEFE, Spanish Acronym) but, facing all, the sports’ democracy vices, its powers are limited.

Text:                             Oswaldo J. Hernández
Photo:                              Sandra Sebastián 
Ilustrations:                             Jacobo Castañeda
Text:                             Oswaldo J. Hernández
Photo:                            Sandra Sebastián 
Ilustrations:                  Jacobo Castañeda

Here, the democracy has questionable rules. The Guatemalan electoral processes on federated sports is a competition in which everyone –like gamers in a Fortnite tournament or Last Men Standing- look for the other contestants to be eliminated at any cost; no one is left standing before, during or after the battle; that no one is intact.

This is side B of sports, the democratic facade where the most unfair competition is hidden; a world that in general almost no one cares about, but, where the main game of representativeness, government, and all federated sports is played.

More than 100 election summons in a year.

More than fifty resignations and vacancies that must be “remedied” with new candidates.

A political limbo with dozens of interim committees that didn´t win the representation of each sports discipline through elections, and work –directly chosen- as small chiefs of senior members of high-performance sports.

More than Q250 million quetzales [US$32,493,014] (one quarter of the budget assigned for Guatemalan Sports) distributed among 46 federations and associations each year are at stake.

The federated sports democracy passes between boycotts, legal insults and questions. Thus, the contestants of the sports electoral contest repealed each other; the ballots disappeared. The contestants cheated, and the legitimacy, in the end, is involved in legal superstitions and too much uncertainty.

There is an arbitrator, a Federated Sports Court (TEDEFE), who, in this sports democracy looks to make sure the rules are respected. But, he is an arbitrator that is almost handcuffed; a subordinate arbitrator for the decision on the winners in each election and the shady deals among sports associations and federations. The roll (voters´ names and turn-out), for example, doesn’t belong to them. And, its autonomy is subordinated by the Guatemalan Sports Confederation (CDAG, Spanish acronym) that decides (and conditions) the budget each year. TEDEFE is an arbitrator, who is easy to mock from the grandstands, because, even though he tries, he lets all slide.  Those who compete know very well that their arbitrator has limited powers.

Elecciones de Comité Ejecutivo de Asociaciones Deportivas Departamentales
In Guatemala, the sports cooptation starts by controlling the sports elections. Photo: Sandra Sebastián

Quetzaltenango, Quetzaltenango, July 21st., 2018.

I was never in a sports election before, it´s something that just a few know about and that happens and is barely advertised. You can see the stadiums, from each town and city, the sports shelters or the athletic home ground and, that is all: giant, torn down buildings. It is thought that inside, a game, a tournament, and a few competitions or trainings take place. Hardly ever anything else, hardly ever elections.

For example: on July 21st., 2018, more than 25 elections for executive committee chairs and some disciplinary bodies were called, among municipal associations, departmental associations and national federations in different places in Guatemala. Rugby, swimming, modern pentathlon, track and field, bodybuilding, court tennis, softball, bowling, volleyball, fencing, badminton, gymnastics, however, that day, just two of all those election processes were held.

According to TEDEFE, many candidates didn´t meet the legal requirements to participate or, they received objections (complaints) from their own associations and their ballots were thrown away, or, no one, as happened in some cases, attended the summons.

More than twenty elections have been postponed since then, without specific dates for their final performance.

Elections for Fencing and Softball in Quetzaltenango were held, they met the requirements and their elections took place, but with just one ballot. It means, elections with an only candidate with no contestants. The paradox consists of, despite everybody knowing who is going to be the winner, all the registered voters must vote.  It´s a little absurd and decisively complex.

That day in July 2018, however, at the set time for the summons, no one was present; no candidates, no athletes, no trainers, no TEDEFE representatives. In Quetzaltenango, the Sporting house grounds is small with around eight rooms with mats, weights, ping pong tables. Just the janitor, named Victor, was in charge of a couple of tables that were ready to hold the Fencing and Softball elections. The rest was a silent, awkward afternoon accompanied by bright sunshine but a chill wind, half an hour passed by, then an hour, and no one came. The janitor was surprised (and felt pity) that there was press coverage for this kind of sad elections. “The first day no one came, the second day just one vote was necessary to have a winner”, he smiled.

For your information: As strange as it may seem, each sports´ managers’ election consider two days for the electoral process. The first day, for the elections to be held, there must be a minimum quorum with one half plus one from all the registered voters.  If this is not met, the elections are repeated the next day, where only one voter is necessary to validate the process and choose a winner.

“So, everybody knows that the first day it is not necessary to be present, because the second day is the most important”, says the janitor, with his tone of voice signaling that he isn´t waiting for anything to happen. He even jokes about closing the facilities, but, he doesn’t do it, his smile is always intact.

In his work, explains, has been witness to different sporting elections. The electoral register of 600 people doesn´t reach the quorum on election day and repeats it the next day with just 5 or 7 votes. Or electoral registers with more than half the people that do not even practice a sports discipline, or, triple or quintuple electoral registers that at the moment of the vote are absolutely complicated.

In any case, it is a strange democracy; but, little by little, it explains a cooptation of all the federated sports system.

Quetzaltenango, Quetzaltenango, July 21st., 2018.

I was never in a sports election before, it´s something that just a few know about and that happens and is barely advertised. You can see the stadiums, from each town and city, the sports shelters or the athletic home ground and, that is all: giant, torn down buildings. It is thought that inside, a game, a tournament, and a few competitions or trainings take place. Hardly ever anything else, hardly ever elections.

For example: on July 21st., 2018, more than 25 elections for executive committee chairs and some disciplinary bodies were called, among municipal associations, departmental associations and national federations in different places in Guatemala. Rugby, swimming, modern pentathlon, track and field, bodybuilding, court tennis, softball, bowling, volleyball, fencing, badminton, gymnastics, however, that day, just two of all those election processes were held.

According to TEDEFE, many candidates didn´t meet the legal requirements to participate or, they received objections (complaints) from their own associations and their ballots were thrown away, or, no one, as happened in some cases, attended the summons.

More than twenty elections have been postponed since then, without specific dates for their final performance.

Elections for Fencing and Softball in Quetzaltenango were held, they met the requirements and their elections took place, but with just one ballot. It means, elections with an only candidate with no contestants. The paradox consists of, despite everybody knowing who is going to be the winner, all the registered voters must vote.  It´s a little absurd and decisively complex.

That day in July 2018, however, at the set time for the summons, no one was present; no candidates, no athletes, no trainers, no TEDEFE representatives. In Quetzaltenango, the Sporting house grounds is small with around eight rooms with mats, weights, ping pong tables. Just the janitor, named Victor, was in charge of a couple of tables that were ready to hold the Fencing and Softball elections. The rest was a silent, awkward afternoon accompanied by bright sunshine but a chill wind, half an hour passed by, then an hour, and no one came. The janitor was surprised (and felt pity) that there was press coverage for this kind of sad elections. “The first day no one came, the second day just one vote was necessary to have a winner”, he smiled.

For your information: As strange as it may seem, each sports´ managers’ election consider two days for the electoral process. The first day, for the elections to be held, there must be a minimum quorum with one half plus one from all the registered voters.  If this is not met, the elections are repeated the next day, where only one voter is necessary to validate the process and choose a winner.

“So, everybody knows that the first day it is not necessary to be present, because the second day is the most important”, says the janitor, with his tone of voice signaling that he isn´t waiting for anything to happen. He even jokes about closing the facilities, but, he doesn’t do it, his smile is always intact.

In his work, explains, has been witness to different sporting elections. The electoral register of 600 people doesn´t reach the quorum on election day and repeats it the next day with just 5 or 7 votes. Or electoral registers with more than half the people that do not even practice a sports discipline, or, triple or quintuple electoral registers that at the moment of the vote are absolutely complicated.

In any case, it is a strange democracy; but, little by little, it explains a cooptation of all the federated sports system.

Elecciones de Comité Ejecutivo de Asociaciones Deportivas Departamentales
A worker of Sport´s House of Quetzaltenango prepares the opening of Fencing and Softboll departamental Elections. PHOTO: Sandra Sebastián.

Guatemala City, Guatemala, Congress of the Republic, July 27th, 2018.

“The sports elections are basically ridiculous”, exclaimed Congresswoman Karina Paz, from the Unidad Nacional de la Esperanza (UNE, a political party), in her office at the Congress of the Republic of Guatemala. Before her, the maximum TEDEFE´s authorities looked for any way out of answering the set of questions during the formal summons before the parliamentarian.

Why aren´t the calls for each federation elections published? - threw the meticulous congresswoman.

And here, in this question, all citizens (even though it´s too much to say), know that the sports managers of each federation keep TEDEFE´s notices tightly sealed when they are about to start elections within small circle of people. The athletes don´t become aware of it; the assembly either. It´s a modus operandi of electoral cooptation, says the congresswoman. Those who have to know, are those who do know, and they are there exactly to participate. It means, they win again, and are the same who register for a ballot.

“The law doesn´t allow this, madam congresswoman. Each federation must advertise their electoral events”, stutters TEDEFE president, Jacobo Reyes Ruíz. This is, maybe, the first time that the greatest Sports arbitrator in Guatemala, officially before the Congress of the Republic, takes the form of a human being, he is seen in public, even though, no words come out.  

For your information: TEDEFE members are six, four incumbents and two substitutes. The Guatemalan Bar Association (CANG, Spanish acronym) chooses two incumbents, the Association of Professional in Economic Sciences (CPCE, Spanish acronym) chooses another two. And, the substitutes are nominated by the Guatemalan Autonomous Sports Confederation (CDAG, Spanish acronym) and the Guatemalan Olympic Committee (COG, Spanish acronym).

(Parenthesis: “the substitutes are like vultures that observe and breathe over the shoulder, they´re exactly like henchmen sending out warnings about each electoral movement. The substitutes are the ones who do the dirty work for the federated sports high command. By this, they know the agenda and how to control the elections at national level”, says a former incumbent member for TEDEFE during a short interview under the confidentiality agreement).

“Why doesn´t anybody know the name of the candidates for the various positions for federated sports almost until hours before an election? Why doesn´t anybody know who the contestants are?” asks Congresswoman Paz, her tone of voice severe.

Even though it was an advantage for us, in this new question, we were made aware that TEDEFE (by law, The Sports and Recreation Law summons to participate just 15 days before each electoral event. And, the voters list (the register), is received 72 hours before elections. In other words, the deadlines are highly adjusted. Only those who are truly interested in knowing what is going on at the electoral level in each sports federation or association; which means, almost no one.

“What happens madam Congresswoman, the problem madam Congresswoman, is on the sports elections design. Every law has a loophole. You need to remember that the CDAG assembly approved and wrote our regulation as a Federated Sports Court”, complaints Court President, Reyes Ruiz.

Again, and all is recorded, we know other intimacies regarding the greatest electoral sports arbitrator now, represented by Reyes before the parliamentarian, and here, it seems to be accurate to describe the scene in somewhat Freudian code: TEDEFE complains about who feeds it. After a tantrum or two (maybe four) we were made aware that the multiple TEDEFE dedicated efforts to changing the law and the electoral proceedings, in pursuit of transparency. But, there is a detail: if they complain or question their bosses in CDAG, their budget decreases; “it has already happened, we have already planned reforms for sports elections. What happened? Our budget was decreased, madam Congresswoman”. Reyes, and his advisor, attorney Diego Montufar, respond excitedly and emotionally, throwing themselves into an apology of compassion and mercy, their tone of voice, however, emphasized and perceived as true; and in this way, they point out that the maximum leader of CDAG and COG had them handcuffed.

The maximum federated sports electoral judge introduces himself as an authority that shows defeat and a little bit of low self-steam. At least, this is the idea that he has about the arbitration performed in TEDEFE.

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«This is side B of sports, the democratic facade where the most unfair competition is hidden». 

«Este es el lado B del deporte, el lado democrático donde se esconden las formas más desleales de competencia». 

Quetzaltenango, Quetzaltenango, July 21st., 2018

On the way back to the Sporting house grounds in Quetzaltenango, finally, an hour and a half after the set time, a small group of well-dressed ladies show up; there are dresses and high heels, a lot of make-up, the environment smells of perfume, and; there is a characteristic mixture of smells all over the place: dry sweat and flowers.

The ladies ask where they have to vote. They are the entire board of the female softball team of Quetzaltenango. And, basically they join the departmental sports association of that sport; some of them have come to vote to the nines.

At the same time, TEDEFE representatives have come into the place and organized the tables for voting. The TEDEFE representatives have also made their appearance. We knew the delegates or representatives are not the same thing. Some are more important than others. For example, the court representatives bring with them the ballots, the electoral register, and the candidates´ name of the sole ballot of the one who looks to lead Fencing and Softball in Quetzaltenango.

The entire organization of the “electoral sports” event, goes crazy and happens stressfully fast. After ten minutes, papers, folders, bags, registers, pens in order, all is ready for the elections to start. However, none of the athletes move.

Elecciones de Comité Ejecutivo de Asociaciones Deportivas Departamentales
The sports delegates prepare the space for the elections in Quetzaltenango. PHOTO: Sandra Sebastián.

In a breath, the electoral delegates, practically in charge of the whole event once they receive the electoral tickets and ballots, give interviews. That afternoon Jacqueline Barrientos is in charge of the Fencing election; and, Ignacio Saenz is responsible for the Softball election. The small group of ladies/athletes gets closer and circles around the questions. You may think that they are looking concerned like the look one has around a campfire. Maybe they want to listen to the sports delegates talk about the grand legend (almost surreal) in the sports democracy: the great legal battle in 2013 to control the Guatemalan Olympic Committee (COG).

Probably the sports guild doesn’t remember all the details, but the delegates summarized it like this:

Dozens of questionings for the electoral arbitrators.

The whole cancellation and repetition of the electoral process.

The twisting ad infinitum of the rules for the enrollment of each one of the ballots.

The candidates´ dirty game to lead high-performance sports.

The foolishness to participate and to be elected at any coast.

The previous economic arrangements with federations, associations and staff in general of all federated sports.

The electoral cooptation to capture federated sports.

In October 2013, Sergio Arnoldo Camargo (former COG president from 2009-2013) and Gerardo Aguirre Oestmann (former CDAG president from 2009-2013 and current COG president) compete for the top leadership in Guatemalan Olympic sports by cheating. None of them could participate, none of them met the requirements, and; despite it all, they challenged the sports electoral system. The legal blocks were the most relevant resources that finally allowed them to have a winner.

planillas COG

For your information: There are specific limits to leading Guatemalan sports. Not just anyone can do it, there are rules; for example: nobody can be immediately reelected for a manager´s position until a period equal to the occupied position has expired (Sergio Camargo as COG former president from 2009-2013 trying to be COG candidate for 2013-2017) another example: nobody can be candidate for a position inside the federated sports if they are in any position in any executive committee of federated sports (Aguirre, being CDAG president from 2009-2013 running as candidate to lead COG from 2013-2017).

To the average Guatemalan, listening to the pronouncing of the boss´ name is always something uncomfortable, but; it´s also, morbid. Mentioning the federated sports senior members makes TEDEFE representatives come closer to the circle made up of delegates, athletes, a janitor and a journalist. They are: Damaris Oliva and Mario Delcompare, and, with their presence, the story becomes more interesting.

According to TEDEFE´s records, three ballots competed for COG in 2013. During the first degree, the ballot for Sergio Camargo was approved with “ok” to participate because of an agreement in 2003 and another in 2011 from TEDEFE, altogether, they stablished the prohibition to be reelected, based on the Olympic Charter, it did not apply for COG candidates to have “international autonomy”. But, it was until the day of the elections, already in the voting schedule, that a constitutional protection court from the municipality of Villa Nueva determined that the ballot of Camargo could participate.

The ballot for Gerardo Aguirre, instead, was off. The reason was clear: without having finished his government as CDAG president, he could not participate, it was illegal. But, he had resigned a little bit untimely with the purpose of participating in the COG elections; and, his nomination was, as his participation record before TEDEFE shows “a constitutional threat”.

There was another ballot, but insignificant; “with no potential votes”, says one of the delegates here in Quetzaltenango. The only legal one was the one with Sandra Yanira Hernández as leader, a stranger; and, a metaphor that says that to meet all the requirements to participate in a sports election is useless.

On election day (10/19/2013), Camargo won the COG reelection 25 to zero (and 21 absences). A real champion, with a little bit more than the half of the register plus one; even though after eight constitutional protections, three objections, and an auditing of accounts in which he was charged for having given uniforms to people outside the Guatemalan delegation for the Pan-American games in Guadalajara, 2011, Camargo would have resigned as a candidate. The Court Auditor ratifies the sentence in June, 2013, months before the COG elections, and; Camargo (even though we don’t know if he complied) was sentenced to pay Q157 thousand 142 quetzales (US$20,420.40) to settle his case.

The Sports law says: “Limitations for the position: one who has been judged in final sentencing at any auditing of accounts”, and; Camargo fell into this limitation.

The Constitutional Court (CC, Spanish acronym) in a provisional constitutional protection, explained: “Camargo participated being excluded from full participation”, (SIC) and the judges from the high court, as sports delegates now remember, decided to cancel the COG elections in 2013, the repetition of the whole electoral process was an order.

elección camargo

In this part of the story, a 16-year-old boy dressed in gymnastics clothing, gloves with magnesium powder, thighs and bandages on wrists, has come in loudly to the Sporting house grounds in Quetzaltenango, and cut off the interview. His presence cuts the dialogue and reminds every one of the elections in that July 2018 afternoon must be held.

The anecdote from Camargo vs. Gerardo Aguirre in 2013, has become tedious and there are a lot of yawns, a cough and a lot of grins from a feeling of exhaustion from the Softball team. The outcome will be retaken further, in the late afternoon. Meanwhile, the loud gymnastics boy asks where he has to vote and, the TEDEFE delegates and representatives are friendly at saying to him that the gymnastics elections won´t be held; apparently, there was no candidate.

Now, altogether, they are going to know about the departmental Fencing election in Quetzaltenango. Finally, a live and full color election; the event will be held in one of the eight rooms at the Sporting house grounds. Delegate Barrientos starts the ceremony: opens the folder with the roll that lists the names of nine people and, looks around her. There are only two persons in the room (and a janitor and a journalist). One of the voters, on top of that, hasn´t brought their ID; and, the other fencer is a minor. We took note: “The sports elections in Guatemala sums absurd after absurd until it becomes something charming”. After 20 minutes of silence, the event was declared vacant; it will be repeated the following day. As it happens, the two athletes that train fencing agreed that just one of them comes back for voting; it means, a single vote for a single ballot: a winner.

*****

I have attended different electoral coverage, usually; they are accompanied with a lot of disturbances, a lot of people. Even those who you think are not important, like the Bar Association elections for positions in the judicial court or for the General Comptroller Office, by the appointee committee, shifts interest, money. Elections to choose deans of schools, presidential elections; on the days of general elections there are people that are transported in buses for voting, people that, eat lunch at political parties’ expenses. Angry people, happy people, but in each process, despite it all, there is (and it´s constant) the illusion that you are not being mocked, that democracy works, that there is legitimacy.

The complete opposite occurs in federated sports, the contradictions are summed up each moment, and you, simply, stop believing.

Elecciones de Comité Ejecutivo de Asociaciones Deportivas Departamentales
The sports delegate of TEDEFE reviews that there is enough quorum to carry out the elections of the departmental softball association of Quetzaltenango. PHOTO: Sandra Sebastián.

At this time, apparently, finally we will see a process for sports election to be held. In the space provided for the Softball elections at the Sporting house grounds in Quetzaltenango, TEDEFE delegate Saenz, announces that there is quorum. From 17 people on the list, 15 are waiting to vote, they´re the ladies in dresses and heels that could issue the suffrage.

Marcela Contreras, the candidate for Softball President, is blond, hazel-eyed and young. For these elections, she wears an evening gown and high heeled sandals. She says the story is easy: a year ago, the chairman of the board resigned, so she and her teammates, organized themselves to finally, today, have a government for their association. Otherwise, she says, there would be problems to execute the budget equal to Q15 thousand quetzales (US$1,949.23).

Then, we knew that an association with no president could disappear, which is a problem for federated sports. For a sports federation to exist, at least five national associations are needed, softball just has three and, therefore, it´s not a federation, it´s just a national association.

While her teammates vote, Contreras shows real concern for the outcome of the legend (surreal) of the COG elections in 2013; “Who won?” they asked. Despite Gerardo Aguirre still being COG president in 2018 (and, despite having been president for Softball National Association in the 90´s), his name sounds particularly distant and remote. However, the candidate has the curiosity to know about the kind of world to be faced in case he becomes a sports leader. But, the delegates have left this story with no ending.

According to TEDEFE records, visited later on; they can be described as a place where it is easy to imagine Kafka being bored, the repetition to elect board of directors for COG, in 2013, was scheduled for December 7th, of that year. Camargo is out, and Gerardo Aguirre, well… some minutes before the election; the CC notification that allowed him to participate even though he had resigned arrived, in absolute terms, to be eligible for CDAG chair.

With 28 votes in favor, 6 void and 2 for the other candidate, Hernández, Gerardo Aguirre was elected COG president in 2013. In 2017, he achieved his reelection for another four years, this time, no one appeared to object.

elección Aguirre

When you look into various electoral processes in TEDEFE records, there are new characteristics that stand out opportunely to describe this electoral arbitrator for sports: almost all the electoral processes require some permission from CDAG. Without CDAG consent, the register is not approved, without the CDAG signature, the candidates’ approval and their respective ballots are not authorized; if CDAG doesn´t prove the resignations and positions available, the call for elections is almost impossible.

The general feeling is CDAG is the one that really controls the electoral sports processes. TEDEFE is a great observer, an arbitrator that seems to be a judge that receives orders from its subjects.

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«The general feeling is CDAG is the one that really controls the electoral sports processes. TEDEFE is a great observer». 

«La sensación que queda es que CDAG es quien realmente controla los procesos electorales del deporte. El TEDEFE es un gran observador». 

Small café in the Guatemalan Downton, Guatemala, August 2018.

Could there be even more? Could the sports elections be even lower? Could they be less than reliable, a little bit awkward, absurd, surreal?

Attorney Yessenia Monzón, Sports Shooting National Federation (FENATIR, Spanish acronym) President, thinks that it is possible. In her case, in FENATIR, she speaks not just about myths but, “classic moments” in sports, just like those potpourri of big plays edited on big TV broadcasters devoted to sports. Although the attorney calls those “big moments”: “bad plays”, “cloudy tricks”, “scams”, throughout the discussion.

With that, we learn of a new picture to describe the sports cooptation in Guatemala, when the leaders resign days before an election, in order for someone of their relatives (sons, grandsons, brothers-in-law) to participate.

The law says: “Limitations for the position: spouses or blood relatives (up to the fourth degree of blood relation) and affinity (up to the second degree) of any sports leader that is in a position on the different governing bodies of federated sports”.

When the sports federations and associations leaders kidnap (yes, kidnap) the voters before an election, because, for your information: on September 12th, 2015, FENATIR elections day, TEFEDE delegate, Julio Vega, wrote on his report: “With the knowledge that, in the spirit of preventing the election, the federation authorities before their imminent defeat called the voters to an assembly even holding some of them against their will”.

When the leaders control the federations and associations over decades, using family networks and companies award businesses to purchase sports equipment. In FENATIR, until 2015, the Gonzales Nájera Family (Mauricio René as grandfather, Alma América as daughter, and, Sergio Iván as grandson) have created a family structure to capture federated sports, according to Yessenia Monzón, this was the control for decades in FENATIR.

And indeed, the González Nájera kidnaped all the FENATIR associates in 2015 in a hotel in the capital city, on election days. In 2007, the grandfather resigned so his daughter could participate. In 2015, the daughter resigned so the grandson could participate. And, for the grandson, Sergio Iván, enrollment was denied.

*****

When you look into various electoral processes in TEDEFE records, there are new characteristics that stand out opportunely to describe this electoral arbitrator for sports: almost all the electoral processes require some permission from CDAG.

Without CDAG consent, the register is not approved, without the CDAG signature, the candidates’ approval and their respective ballots are not authorized; if CDAG doesn´t prove the resignations and positions available, the call for elections is almost impossible.

The general feeling is CDAG is the one that really controls the electoral sports processes. TEDEFE is a great observer, an arbitrator that seems to be a judge that receives orders from its subjects.

secuestro FENATIR

Monzón says, in FENATIR all the “classic moments” of any federated sports election happened: registered kidnaping; sudden resignations from the leaders, family networks, businesses, constitutional protections, complaints, cooptation. “Inside the 46 sport disciplines in Guatemala, the sports democracy is the beginning for any kind of corruption”, she declares.

FENATIR, for two long years (2015-2017) didn´t have a sports government. The González Nájera family made it so their grandson held the interim presidency. And, nowadays, the Public Prosecutor´s Office Ministry is prosecuting Sergio Iván González for abuse of authority and fraudulent use of documents as acting Chairman for FENATIR.

Until December 4th, 2016, FENATIR decided to repeat its elections, the first day, no one showed up; the second, Yessenia Monzón won the elections with a sole ballot and with just two votes out of nine registered.

denuncia penal fenatir

Until December 4th, 2016, FENATIR decided to repeat its elections, the first day, no one showed up; the second, Yessenia Monzón won the elections with a sole ballot and with just two votes out of nine registered.

Quetzaltenango, Quetzaltenango, July 21st., 2018.

Last surreal electoral scene:

In Quetzaltenango, mid-afternoon, the Softball association is waiting for the predictable results, there is anxiety. There´s people here that bite their nails, which is a little bit absurd because all of them know that a sole ballot was participating. Marcela Contreras, the candidate in a ball gown is vociferously called by her teammates, they yell with excitement because TEFEDE delegates are already going to release the results; and her, after the interview granted, runs to the room while smiling, maybe wrapped in the irony of the obvious results.

She has won, but, she will have to wait for three days and ensure no one presents any legal fallacy that could thwart this awkward and sad sports democracy even more. 

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