MONTREAL, Oct. 3, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - In recent days, allegations of harassment have been directed toward me by people who accuse me of intentions that I never had. Although I assume full responsibility for my effusive and demonstrative personality, I would like to reiterate that I never intended to offend or upset anyone with my remarks or my behaviour.
Given this situation, I asked to be temporarily relieved of my duties as president of the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC), so that the independent external investigation launched to examine these allegations could proceed in full compliance with the rules that ensure its impartiality.
Unfortunately, the current situation is a major distraction that obscures the COC's real goals, especially with the Rio Games fast approaching. It now jeopardizes the organization's smooth operations and may have repercussions that ultimately affect Canadian Olympic athletes who are the COC's raison d'être and who have always been the focus of my concerns and my volunteer involvement in the Olympic world.
For these reasons, I announce today that I am stepping down as president of the Canadian Olympic Committee, to which I have devoted the past 10 years of my life and championed with all of my energy.
I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to those who may have been offended by my behaviour. I realize that my attitude could at times be perceived as questionable by some women and could have caused them to feel uncomfortable. I acknowledge this and will adjust my behaviour accordingly.
I leave with a sense of accomplishment. Under my presidency, the COC weathered the most difficult times in its history, with the turmoil caused by a global economic crisis of unprecedented proportions. I am proud to have finally given the COC the means to realize its ambitions and positioned it as central to the development of athletic excellence in Canada. I wish many more triumphs to the Olympic movement in future. I am also pleased to have contributed to bolstering Canada's influence within the international Olympic movement, as well as giving all Canadians Olympic House, which proudly sports its rings in downtown Montreal, which contributes to promoting the Francophonie within the Olympic movement.
But my greatest joy was spending time with and serving our athletes and coaches, who resolutely push their limits every day so as to be worthy of representing us. In my view, they are the embodiment of courage, perseverance and achievement. These young people were my true inspiration during my time at the COC and will continue to inspire me as I now invest all of my energy in my profession and in new projects.
To conclude, I would like to thank my family, my friends and all those who have supported me in these most trying times.
SOURCE Marcel Aubut
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