The Maltese governing body of taekwondo has returned to the national and international community after a hiatus of over a year.
In December 2019, a delegation from World Taekwondo Europe headed by its president visited Malta and met with representatives from the Maltese Olympic Committee and SportMalta before meeting the committee members of the Malta Taekwondo Federation.
As a result of this visit, World Taekwondo suspended the federation as it was deemed unfit to continue operating in harmony.
An Interim Board was put in its place to oversee the sport locally whilst the governing body examined the governance issues that had plagued the sport in Malta over numerous years.
A process, that was supposed to last a handful of months, was unfortunately delayed as the investigation process encountered different obstacles and was unable to finish its remit and forward its recommendations in the proposed time. The eventual recognition of the Interim Board by all local taekwondo clubs paved the way for a new statute to be approved in February.
Endorsed by World Taekwondo, the new statute provides a strong tool to ensure that the sport does not face the same difficulties it encountered in the past. The addition of a number of bylaws strengthens the governance of the sport with transparency and accountability being brought to the forefront.
With all these measures, including the dissolution of the former federation and the formation of a new association with the name the Malta Taekwondo Association, the sport in Malta has regained recognition by the International Federation – World Taekwondo, by the Continental Federation – World Taekwondo Europe, by Sport Malta and by the Maltese Olympic Committee.
Compliance with the requirements of the Malta Business Registry has been achieved, whilst the certification from the Commissioner for Voluntary Organizations is being awaited.
The executive for the next three years is composed of Anna Vassallo, as president, Andrea Briffa Sillato (treasurer), Joanna Scicluna (general secretary), Mauro Busuttil (administrator and national team co-ordinator) and Jerome Vassallo as national team representative.
Apart from her national responsibilities, Vassallo is also a council member of World Taekwondo Europe and has recently been appointed as a member of the electoral commission of the same continental federation.
To assist them in their mission, the executive committee members have approved the appointment of William Beck, Deputy President of the Maltese Olympic Committee, as a moderator.
A technical team headed by Master Christopher Vella and a Referee Chairman, Hamoun Taivar will also be working together within the new association which will focus to ascertain a positive environment in which its member clubs can flourish, and its athletes develop.