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Athletics: SAA vice-presidents reinstated

Two senior officials from the Singapore Athletics Association (SAA) who were earlier suspended have been reinstated.

SINGAPORE: Two senior officials from the Singapore Athletics Association (SAA) who were earlier suspended have been reinstated.

An independent panel ruled that SAA's processes in suspending the duo were not robust enough.

Their four-month suspension kicked in on February 18, and their appeal was heard on April 24.

"Water under the bridge" - that was the phrase SAA chief Tang Weng Fei used in describing his reaction to the panel's decision.

Vice-presidents Loh Chan Pew and Steven Lee had earlier been suspended for four months each for misbehaviour.

Tang said: "These are all passionate people. Like I said, I have nothing personal against Chan Pew or Steven. I'm quite confident we can still work together. The things are over and we want to put everything under the bridge, we want to move forward."

However, Tang stressed that the verdict was not a vindication of misbehaviour.

Rather, the manner in suspending the two did not sufficiently follow due process.

When contacted, Loh said he was glad with the ruling.

Loh, who is vice-president of competitions at SAA said: "I'm very happy to be reinstated after spending 52 years in track and field. All along, it had nothing to do with my work. I have done the work well, I'm holding four portfolios. I'm enjoying working in SAA. I don't think there will be any problem in future."

But the fire-fighting doesn't end here.

Channel NewsAsia understands the SAA has sent a letter to national pole vaulter Rachel Yang, asking her to retract statements she had made about the association.

She had used Facebook in several outbursts, alleging that the SAA was inconsistent in its selection policies ahead of competitions.

The letter called for the posts to be taken down and be replaced by an apology.

SAA said it reserved the right to take legal action if Yang fails to do so.

Tang said: "You have to be careful when you use social media. You have to be responsible for what you say and write. You must get your facts right before you put things on social media because social media is very powerful."

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