WFDF announces that the Congress has revoked the regular membership of the Flying Disc Federation of India (FDFI) and subsequently approved the application from the Ultimate Players Association of India (UPAI) for regular membership.
“This has been a very difficult process as we of course wanted to give our incumbent member FDFI the most favorable opportunity to present their case,” stated WFDF President Robert “Nob” Rauch.
“However, our Conduct Committee, after an exhaustive investigation, concluded that FDFI did not meet the requirements for membership as outlined in our Bylaws, and Congress agreed with their conclusion by an over two-thirds majority. We are very excited that UPAI, with its strong competition program, solid ties to the global community, and a very active development program across India, has been approved by Congress for membership, and we welcome them into the WFDF family.”
Based on a number of complaints received leading up to the World Championship of Beach Ultimate (WCBU) and World Overall Championship (WOC) in 2011, WFDF commenced an ongoing review in May 2011 of FDFI’s governance practices and representativeness as they impacted its qualifications as a WFDF Member, as outlined in in Article III, Clause 1.1 of WFDF’s Bylaws. The UPAI was established in 2013 and submitted an application for WFDF membership to represent flying disc in India, alleging that FDFI did not represent the bulk of the legitimate disc sports players in India or do anything to promote the development and growth of disc sports in the country. Article III, Clause 1.4 of WFDF’s Bylaws only permit one national governing body for a disc sport and therefore UPAI’s application could not be considered unless the membership of the incumbent member in India, FDFI, were to be revoked. With this conflict, a Conduct Committee was established in December 2013 to review whether FDFI was meeting the criteria for membership as outlined in the Bylaws. WFDF investigated with several detailed questionnaires for FDFI and requests for supporting documentation, and both FDFI and UPAI were invited to make a presentation to the Congress during its August 2014 session in Lecco with an opportunity for a question and answer session as well for each representative.
Subsequent to those presentations, the WFDF Conduct Committee completed its review and recommended that the membership of FDFI in WFDF be revoked. Among other issues, the Conduct Committee report stated: “FDFI does not fairly represent the interests of Constituents for the Disc Sports they represent in the country as it has ignored active flying disc players in the country, consistently failed to send athletes or teams to WFDF sanctioned events despite registering for them, and has not demonstrated any effort to grow or develop disc sports in the country.” Congress members were asked to vote on two questions: first, should the membership of FDFI be terminated, and second, if and only if FDFI’s membership received the requisite votes to be terminated, should the membership application by UPAI be approved. The WFDF Congress decided by the two-thirds majority needed as per Article III 4.3 of the WFDF Bylaws to revoke the regular membership of the Flying Disc Federation of India (FDFI), with immediate effect. Subsequently, the WFDF Congress has also decided by the required majority that the Ultimate Players Association of India (UPAI) be approved as a WFDF regular member representing Flying Disc in India, with immediate effect.
The protocol for this matter was governed by the WFDF Bylaws under Article III, Clauses 1.1, 1.4, and 4.3. “Congress has taken this decision with full confidence that it is in accordance with the WFDF Bylaws, and that the result of this process is in the best interests of the athletes and the entire Flying Disc community in India. We need our member associations to be representative and take care of the interests of the complete Flying Disc community in their country according to WFDF Bylaws, under the best of governance standards,” commented WFDF Executive Director Volker Bernardi. “Such decisions are never taken lightly and I applaud our Congress, Board of Directors and Conduct Committee for the many hours of in-depth analysis of the current situation of Flying Disc sports in India.”