FRANCK FIFE / AFP
Claude Atcher, here in Paris, December 14, 2020.
RUGBY – Just over a year from the 2023 World Cup in France, the general manager of the Rugby World Cup Claude Atcher was laid off “as a precaution” and ” with immediate effect “announced this Monday, August 29, the Minister of Sports Amélie Oudéa-Castéra.
At the end of June, a labor inspection investigation was launched after an article from the sports daily The Team detailing a “deep social malaise” within the GIP (Public interest group) France 2023, the institution in charge of the organization of the World Cup directed by Claude Atcher.
This decision, “for the time necessary to close the investigation”was taken in consultation with the French Rugby Federation and the CNOSF (French National Olympic and Sports Committee).
It comes after a report by the ethics committee which mentions the part of Atcher “alarming managerial practices altering the functioning of the structure and the state of suffering of a certain number of collaborators”.
“Atcher will no longer be present or active, directly or indirectly, within, in the name and on behalf of the GIP during the period of layoff”the ministry said in a statement.
He will be temporarily replaced in his functions by the deputy director general of the GIP, Julien Collette.
“The deep values of rugby call for perfect vigilance as to their respect”
This decision was taken in concert with the French Rugby Federation (FFR) and the French Olympic Committee (CNOSF), the two other shareholders of the organizing committee of the Mondial-2023.
The Federation “Is fully associated with the action plan decided today in consultation with the Ministry of Sports and the President of GIP France-2023, Jacques Rivoal”.
“The deep values of rugby call for perfect vigilance with regard to their respect. The Federation has based its action on the protection of all its populations, employees are obviously part of its priorities.explained the FFR to AFP.
“The decision is taken as a precautionary measure pending receipt of the conclusions of the Labor Inspectorate, which will prescribe the follow-up to be given, everyone having the opportunity to defend their rights. The FFR will convene an extraordinary Board of Directors of the GIP to ratify this decision within the week”continued the instance.
In an article by The Teamseveral employees of the organizing committee, former and current, denounced on condition of anonymity the “management by terror” set up by Atcher and his chief of staff within the GIP.
“A joint mission of the General Inspectorate of Finance and the General Inspectorate of Education, Sport and Research is triggered by the State to, on the one hand, analyze the existence of possible breaches of economic and financial probity or conflicts of interest and on the other hand, to support the GIP in the organization of some of its strategic programs”ends the press release.
The World-2023 is scheduled in France from September 8 to October 28.
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