Kuwait may have sponsored Musallam's World Aquatics presidency campaign. GETTY IMAGES

A major scandal is engulfing the Asian Swimming Federation (now Asia Aquatics) over alleged mismanagement of funds, according to a well-placed insider. Recent revelations directly implicate Sheikh Khalid B. Al Sabah, the current president of Asia Aquatics, and a sum of $7 million provided by the Kuwaiti Public Authority for Sport (PAS) from 2009 to 2016.

These funds, originally earmarked for the development of aquatics in Asia and the Federation, did not reach the organisation's accounts. A memo with this information has reached the Asian Aquatics office and has been distributed to all National Federations as well as key members of the continental aquatics organisation.

The unveiling is scheduled for the Asia Aquatics General Congress on 12 February 2024, in Doha, coinciding with the 2024 World Aquatics World Championships. President Al Sabah has been absent from most Asia Aquatics events for the past eight years.

Husain Al-Musallam, President of World Aquatics, a prominent figure in the Kuwaiti Swimming Federation has often acted on his behalf. He is a member of Asia Aquatics and a close associate of President Al Sabah. Suspicions have been raised that the close duo may have worked together to divert funds intended for other purposes. 

Growing evidence points to a systematic misuse of funds and raises suspicions about Musallam's involvement in activities within the World Aquatics community. The Kuwait Olympic Committee, led by President Sheikh Fahad Nasser Sabah Al Ahmed Al Sabah, has asked Dawood Sulaiman Abdul Rasul Marafi, Kuwait's Minister of Public Administration, Youth Affairs, and Communications, to launch an investigation into Husain Al-Musallam. 

Husain All Musallam - Prosecution Referral.pdf

The focus is on contract violations discovered during the preparation and implementation of the 3rd Gulf Sports Games. These violations involve Dynamic General Trading, Import and Export, a company owned by a close relative of the Secretary General of the NOC and General Director of the Games, Husain Al-Musallam. 

In a letter sent earlier this month, the President of the Kuwaiti NOC informed the Minister of the actions taken by the NOC's Ethics Committee in relation to Al-Musallam's case. The President also urged the Minister to refer the case to the Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority. 

Previous corruption scandals involving Husain Al-Musallam's activities in various Olympic and sports organisations, including the Olympic Council of Asia, raise many questions. There is evidence to suggest that these are not isolated incidents but part of Husain's wider practices, a web he has woven around Olympic organisations and involving his family members.

Here are some more details of the case in The Inquisitor Magazine.

Under Kuwaiti law and company regulations, there appeared to be a clear conflict of interest. However, the Ethics Commission concluded that no violation had occurred. In seeking redress, the President of the NOC, has questioned the impartiality of the decision of the Ethics Committee of the Kuwait NOC.

This raises concerns that Husain Al-Musallam may have manipulated the committee's decision. Sheikh Fahad, the emerging leader of the Kuwait National Olympic Committee, is known for his principled stance, in promoting organisational independence and transparency.

He is strongly opposed to corruption and any clandestine activities. Sheikh Fahad has formally asked Kuwait's Anti-Corruption Authority and the public prosecutor to review the case. The move not only threatens Hussein Al-Musallam with another major corruption scandal involving the Olympics, but also opens a new investigation.

A leaked document, obtained by a UK-based freelance writer Al-Salami, reveals a correspondence that delves into the revelations surrounding Al-Musallam. 

The message, from the president of the Kuwait's Swimming Association to the foreign minister, reveals requests for substantial funds and shows evidence of numerous trips around the world. These trips, apparently facilitated by private planes, show Al-Musallam's high status and impressive wealth.

Husain Al Musallam - FINA Presidency Nomination.pdf

The injection of significant government funds into his campaign is emerging as a linchpin in the unfolding investigation, and one that requires meticulous scrutiny. 

A critical examination, as this story makes clear, will delve into the maze of financing mechanisms employed by Al-Musallam during his electoral campaign. In the context of democratic norms, such machinations could potentially be interpreted as a blatant violation of the principle of a level playing field, giving a single candidate an unfair advantage over his rivals. 

The escalating situation raises even deeper questions, shedding a light on the systematic exploitation of public resources for personal gain, suggesting not only ethical transgressions but also posing a palpable threat to the integrity of the global aquatics community. The inquiry will not only reveal the logistical intricacies surrounding the allocation of funds, but will also shed light on their wider implications.