Prepare the written statement of allegations that you will give to the person who is accused of the rule 69 violation. Make the allegations as detailed as possible, and include the time and place of the hearing (rule 69.2
Should the protest committee learn of the evidence of misconduct during a protest hearing, rule 69
cannot be addressed in that hearing. The protest committee must prepare the written allegation after that hearing is closed, and promptly deliver the statement to the competitor. Even if the competitor gives approval to proceed with the hearing immediately, wait. The competitor must be given a reasonable time to prepare a defense. Schedule the rule 69
hearing leaving enough time for the competitor to review the allegations, gather witnesses and find a person to provide support during the hearing. This is often only the following day.
The written notice in terms of rule 69.2
should state the alleged specific act or acts of misconduct. It is not sufficient to state that the person committed an act of misconduct by committing a breach of good manners, without saying what the misconduct is. The description of the misconduct should be specific.
The notice should be detailed. For example, state that “immediately after the decision was announced, the competitor stated in a loud voice that the decision was wrong, and called the members of the protest committee ‘idiots’ and that they have ‘no clue what they are doing’”. It is not sufficient to write, “the competitor said that the decision of a protest committee is wrong”.
Where foul language is used, the notice should either quote the language or describe it clearly. For example, that the allegation of, “using vulgar language indicating sexual intercourse.” Do not merely say that the competitor used “insulting language” without quoting or paraphrasing the language.
A good test is whether a dispassionate outsider will understand the notice and would agree that the alleged conduct is misconduct.
The notice should also allege the time, place and identity of other persons involved, if known.
It is preferable to be specific regarding the act of misconduct so that there is no possible misunderstanding by the competitor. Remember that a finding at the end of the hearing cannot be of misconduct, other than that alleged in the notice. If the evidence at the hearing differs materially from what is alleged in the notice, the hearing should be adjourned to give a further written statement of allegations and time to prepare. An alternative is to inform the competitor or other person that a finding might be made in respect of this additional misconduct, and ask whether he or she requires additional time to prepare and gather evidence in this regard. Record that this was done. This record should form part of the report made in terms of rule 69.2