February 14 - Change Cycling Now (CCN) founder Jaimie Fuller has backed the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to lead an independent inquiry into the International Cycling Union's (UCI) Lance Armstrong doping scandal but predicted the sport's President Pat McQuaid will not open himself to such close scrutiny.
WADA President John Fahey indicated this week that his organisation would be happy to conduct an independent inquiry into cycling as long as the UCI stayed out of it and stop dictating terms.
The move comes with the UCI and WADA at loggerheads over the establishment of Truth and Reconciliation process, which McQuaid wants to set-up after disbanding his own Independent Commission last month.
WADA have backed by CCN, the high-profile pressure group that was formed last year in a bid to rid the sport of doping, but Fuller feels McQuaid will not budge on the issue.
"WADA would be ideal to lead an independent inquiry into the UCI," Fuller told insidethegames.
"WADA would have been ideal from the very start as a respected, independent, international organisation.
"But as much as I would love to see that happen, allowing WADA in to conduct an independent inquiry is contrary to everything the UCI is doing.
"After fighting so long to block a truly independent inquiry, I can't see WADA being allowed through the door."
Fuller admitted he had high hopes for the UCI's Independent Commission consisting of chairman Sir Philip Otton, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and Australian lawyer Malcolm Holmes.
The Commission was scrapped days after a high-profile public row with the UCI at a confrontational procedural hearing in London last month.
"To be clear, I fully supported the Commission and I was very pleased to see them make attempts to be truly independent.
"They wanted to an independent job but they were blocked by the UCI and ultimately disbanded, with a disgraceful and frankly ridiculous statement from the UCI.
"The most ridiculous thing is that Pat McQuaid committed half the UCI reserves to fund the Commission solely to keep his job.
"He should have resigned long ago and his attempts to stay in power are becoming outrageous.
"He is being allowed get away with so much and I know there are people on the UCI's own Management Committee that are not happy about.
"Those members really need to step up.
"As for CCN, we will continue to work hard to keep the pressure on the UCI.
"We were not expecting the Commission to be scrapped so we are reorganising and looking at how best to apply real pressure."
Fuller also hit out at UCI Honorary President Hein Verbruggen, who stood down as UCI President in 2005, after 14 years in charge, meaning he led the sport at the height of the Armstrong scandal.
"Although Hein Verbruggen is trying to stay in the background, the UCI's actions have his fingerprints all over it," said Fuller.
"He is using McQuaid as his puppet and he must go along with McQuaid.
"I'm shocked he is still there and equally shocked still holds prestigious roles such as President of SportAccord.
"He is still a hugely influential figure in the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympic Movement and he must go."
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