IHF lecturer Huelin: ”I don’t know anybody that is happy”

Tono Huelin. Foto: WeShareHandball.org

Ramon Gallego has already decided to leave the IHF in protest to Hassan Moustafa and the presidents methods. But Gallego is not alone in this – IHF lecturer Tono Huelin has also decided to leave. In an interview with Handbollskanalen Tono Huelin talks about why he left the IHF and Hassan Moustafa and his methods.

Jose Antonio ”Tono” Huelin is a, to say the least, experienced person in the handball world. The Spaniard was a IHF referee for 21 seasons dating from 1987 to 2008 when we finished his career with officiating the Olympics in Beijing. Tono officiated 2 Olympics, 2 World Cups, 4 Euros and 2 EHF Champions League finals.

After his career as a referee Huelin started educating other referees and in 2009, only one year after his career ended, he became a IHF Rules of the Game Lecturer. Since then he has educated referees and worked as a technical delegate for the IHF and the EHF.

Until the day of his resignation he was one of the members of the New Rules Working Group, in which they were writing and designing the New Rule Books. In that group Ramon Gallego was the chairman. Two out of the five members in the group is not working with the IHF anymore.

The other day it got known that Tono Huelin had left the IHF and Handbollskanalen took contact with him to hear his side of it all.

Why did you quit all the positions related to the PRC board of instructors?

– This was an easy decision for me, despite we were so close to Tokyo 2020.  And the reason was of course in solidarity with the last lack of respect of the IHF President with Ramón, with this crazy and capricious decision of exclude him from the OOGG.  It was not because of this single fact, there were many other interferences before, but this was the one that overflowed the glass of patience.

– I share the same values than Ramon regarding referee independence of any kind of political pressure. This is the only way to empower the referees to be able to do a good job in their already very difficult task. So when the decision of the IHF president to exclude the leader of the referees out of the most important competition, I decided also not to be part of this polluted environment anymore.

Tono Huelin also says that Ramon and he are not alone in deciding to quit. Over the last two days two other persons has taken the same decision.

How much of your decision had to to with Ramon Gallegos decision?

– I would say that this was a decision taken at the same moment.  When he commented me the IHF’s decision, I told him, Ramón it’s time to leave this boat. There are certain limits of what can be tolerated.

What can you say about Hassan Moustafa and his methods?

– I don’t know anybody that is happy when he’s around. He has a dictatorial style, and whoever has a different opinion can’t express it due to the risk to be ”fired”.

Do you think that Hassan Moustafa should be allowed to continue as president for the IHF?

– This is a Congress responsibility. The President is elected every 4 years and as I far as I know there is not limitation of times to be a candidate.

– Personally I would like that anyone else with another profile could be elected. The IHF is a very important organization that deserves a modernization in the structures and procedures.

Read more: Ramon Gallego responds to the IHF