What is surprising is not the very fact of the “attack” on Y.Ganus and its organization, but the delay with which it happened. The hero of today’s article powerfully tore the wasps’ nest, and the already aggressive swarm cannot be calmed. After the publication of the report on the results of the audit of the financial activities of RUSADA, its head appeared in the eyes of the public as a corrupt official, who many times exceeded his own powers. The inspection was ordered by the domestic Olympic Committees. Ganus is confident that the conclusions that discredit the organization and him personally are an order that is designed to settle scores with him, deprive RUSADA of independence, and also change its work in a direction suitable for top officials in the world of sports.
International scandals provoked by external “opponents” are not enough for us, apparently. At the same time, the internal proceedings may have even greater resonance, since the removal of Ganus, regardless of the reasons and rationale for such a decision, is unlikely to please WADA, which will perceive such an initiative as a negative action.
This is likely to happen. Very soon, the supervisory board of RUSADA will have to decide the fate of the CEO, as well as the direction of subsequent activities. Of course, the new course is unlikely to have many differences from the previous one, which is tough and devoid of compromises only declaratively. In this case, contact with WADA will need to be established from “0”. Given the lingering hopes of participating in the Tokyo Olympics even in neutral status, this internal scandal will be a serious blow to Russia’s reputation.
However, the conflict has been developing for about 12 months. Therefore, sooner or later he had to go into the open phase using unacceptable methods of proving his own innocence. The essence of the conflict lies in the personality of Ganus and his position taken after being appointed head of RUSADA. Surely, he did not expect that it would be necessary to manage such a complex structure during the crisis, forming a new organization. There is no doubt that Ganus did not imagine the size of the problem.
Our hero, in addition to an excellent education, can boast of work experience in many serious vacancies in various enterprises. WADA gave the go-ahead for his appointment, despite the lack of experience in sports management and anti-doping. However, his resume indicated that he would certainly retain the independence of his position in his post.
The calculation of our founders, who agreed with the candidacy of Ganus, is not difficult to understand. Most likely, they were sure that a person with experience in the entrepreneurial and legal field perfectly understands the scope of their own powers, so they will not dig to the roots of the existing problem. Declaring that Russia opposes doping, and is also ready to fight it in every possible way, forming a negative attitude towards this phenomenon in society and actually taking steps to achieve this task are completely different things.
Hardly anyone expected that Ganus would have such an ardent desire for change. He was told that he needed to get rid of the disorder in the structure, focus on international standards and actively fight doping. As a result, Yuri took such wishes literally, instantly switched to the public plane and in fact began the fight against doping due to his own understanding of this Mission. Of course, in such an approach there is more quixotism than a rational approach to a multivalued problem, which at this stage of the development of Russian sports and the life of the country is almost impossible to solve.
Surely there were mistakes in Ganus’s work. He did not take into account the mentality of the Russian sports community, accustomed to the use of doping. However, on the other hand, he was told that without the high-quality work of his structure, the presence of domestic sports in the international arena is impossible. As a result, he took this statement as a basis, wishing not only to restore the agency in rights, but also to create conditions for a radical change in the Russian mentality in matters of attitude to doping.
While many wanted to understand who gave our hero carte blanche, as well as who “protects” him (since an ordinary person would hardly work so boldly without help from above), his reformatted agency seriously checked the dark corners, distributing to everyone who deserved disqualifications. This approach was unambiguously approved by WADA, and the Russian sports community was shocked. Earning the trust and respect of international structures, Yuri felt the resistance in Russia more strongly, which forced him to be active in public. The rebuilding of RUSADA was an important achievement, but this success had a short-term effect.
Over time, his opponents realized that high-ranking officials would not cover Yuri, and he would have to defend himself against attacks from the outside on his own. His “speaker” skills are frankly weak, however, in the process of dialogue with the audience, the fighter against Russian doping nevertheless formed a certain formula. He thought logically and practically. The first line of defense was based on the following thesis: if doping is evil and our country suffers from it, then, fighting it would act in the national interests. But, Ganus quickly realized that most people from the world of sports have no desire to change the anti-doping culture in Russia. As he plunged deeper into problem solving, he felt less and less protected.
However, Ganus did not give up, which was very strange. He either did not realize that the desire to work according to the letter of the law causes rejection, or he decided to go all the way in the “constant water dropping wears away the stone” format. Unfortunately, there were situations when he could not keep his composure. It is difficult to explain in another way the appeal to V.V. Putin with the demand for urgent reforms of the sports movement, which has found itself on the brink of an abyss. Surely everyone understands that this call flew into the void, and Ganus is still waiting for support.
Unfortunately, the sports community took up arms against our hero, believing that he should first of all protect Russian athletes, even if this is contrary to the law and the principles of justice. Many demanded an open confrontation with WADA, although the resource for such a war was frankly lacking. Ganus, by his actions, and not only in words, adhered to the position of “cleanse and stay”, which was supposed to give a breath of fresh air for the national sport.
After receiving a terrible blow, which was the exposure of the falsified database of the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory, the sports leadership of our country decided to fight back by sending a claim to Lausanne, where the Court of Arbitration for Sport is based. As a result, to achieve the set task, the supervisory board of RUSADA, where our main fighter against doping is absent, prepared the necessary papers. The CEO was supposed to sign this appeal, which Ganus eventually did, adding his disagreement with such a decision. Even then, it was possible to come to the conclusion that Yuri was playing for “everything”, entering into an open conflict with the sports leadership. After this, there was nowhere to retreat.
Most likely, Ganus was openly told that it was time to leave, he did not budge. It is surprising that such an experienced and talented functionary did not feel the danger when the founders announced the need for an audit. The calmness of the general director at the beginning of the action was probably due to the absence of serious violations based on the results of past inspections. Ganus even now assumed that everything would be limited to only minor technical nuances. It is considered superfluous to think about the details of the approval of the organization that conducted the audit. In any case, it was completed. As a result, shocking results became public almost immediately, because large-scale financial violations were discovered in RUSADA in the period 2018-2019, including the possible appropriation by Yuri of 110 million rubles, the overstated cost of taxi costs by 11 million rubles, misappropriation of budgetary funds, as well as abuse of office.
The patriots stepped up, Ganus launched a retaliatory attack, and the National Olympic Committee simply posted a confidential report on its website. This publication was supposed to confirm the accuracy of the official conclusions, which were made on the basis of a deep and thorough audit, carried out in full compliance with all existing international standards and regulations. Meanwhile, for some reason, everyone turned a blind eye to the presence in the document of the formulations “presumably” or “possibly”.
The sensational “theatrical work of Serebrennikov” developed in a similar way. Moreover, even the indicated amounts are slightly the same. But the case considered in this article has not yet become criminal. Surely this can even be avoided if Ganus voluntarily leaves his post. However, he has repeatedly stated that he does not even consider such a development of events.
After that, a tiresome “exchange of pleasantries” began. The founders are confident that they have carried out a routine scheduled review without any overtones. Accordingly, it is difficult for them to understand such an aggressive reaction of Ganus, who wants to get away from the essence of the question posed by his explanations. In turn, the anti-doping fighter does not doubt that this test actually became the basis for a raider seizure under the patronage of the ROC.
RUSADA did respond to the accusations received. According to their position, the audit was carried out in a biased manner, without taking into account the peculiarities of the activities of this organization. The letter says that the audit results contain data that may harm the activities of RUSADA. It is difficult to disagree with this statement. The work of an anti-doping agency should not be fully advertised and become globally open to everyone. RUSADA rightly notes that hints on corruption allegations are unacceptable. Therefore, it is important to prove that agreements with partners, which amount to 110 million rubles. went to the pocket of the head of the structure, that taxi costs were overstated, etc.
Ganus at the moment resembles a hunted beast. He rushes between extremes, blames, trying to defend himself. Moreover, Yuri even remembered the predecessors of Kamaev and Sinev, who died almost simultaneously in 2016. The functionaries of such a scale have not yet hinted at the strangeness of the departure of these persons. Ganus added that he does not consider suicide as a way to solve problems, so his suicide notes should not be trusted if they appear.
Some consider such statements to be hysterical, but a person who owns important classified information is most likely trite to defend his own life, albeit in a not entirely standard way. Ganus is definitely not a hero, but he cannot be called an enemy of Russia or a villain either. He stubbornly rested and is ready to do everything in his power to “protect Russian sports interests.” Moreover, he will do this in the format in which he is used to and considers the most optimal. Unfortunately, this is often extremely dangerous.
Let’s add one more important and very revealing touch that characterizes the position and work of Ganus in the fight against doping. When Lasitskene sounded the alarm regarding the impending disaster with domestic athletics, it was Yuri who was the first to support her, publicly speaking about the consequences of the inaction of the former ARAF leadership. He did not disclose the details, but made it clear that if the truth is not revealed now, then in the future the consequences will be much worse.
In that situation, they tried to explain to Ganus from above that he needed to concentrate on his immediate responsibilities, without showing initiative in solving other issues!