IAAF cancels World Athletics Awards Gala

November 06, 2015
In this Aug.21, 2015 file photo, then IAAF president Lamine Diack adjusts his headphones during a joint IOC and IAAF press conference on the side of the World Athletic Championships in Beijing. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Jamaican sprint star Usain Bolt will have to wait longer to find out if he is the IAAF Male Athlete of the year as the IAAF World Athletics Awards Gala has been cancelled.

This cancellation comes after the arrest of former IAAF president Lamine Diack who has been accused of being a part of a “system of corruption” that sought to blackmail athletes, with demands of money to hush-up suspected doping

“Given the cloud that hangs over our association, this is clearly not the time for the global athletics family to be gathering in celebration of our sport,” Coe said.

Diack, 82, was arrested on Sunday and questioned over allegations that he accepted bribes for deferring sanctions against Russian athletes that have tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.

On Tuesday, Diack was released on bail and ordered not to leave France as the investigation continues.

The gala annually awards the IAAF Athlete of the Year honours and welcomes past athletes, coaches and agents for a ceremony in Monaco.

A smaller and more informal dinner will be held for the athletes, who will still receive their awards, reports French newspaper Le Equipe.

The other men nominated for the IAAF Male Athlete of the Year are British Olympic and World champion Mo Farah, Kenyan marathoner Eliud Kipchoge and Russian hurdler Sergey Shubenkov.

The female nominees are Dafne Schippers of the Netherlands, Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia, Mare Dibaba of Ethiopia and Zuzana Hejnova of Russia. Five more athletes will be nominated in other respective categories.

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