Written by Bella Dalima
17 Jan, 2014 | 6:08 pm
Jose Sulaiman, President of the World Boxing Council (WBC) since 1975, died in Los Angeles, where he had been hospitalised since October with a heart condition. He was 82.
His son, Mauricio, and the WBC confirmed his death.
Sulaiman, an omnipresent figure in the sport, was voted “president for life” during the WBC’s annual convention in November. He spent his life in boxing, first fighting as an amateur before becoming a trainer, promoter, referee and judge, according to the International Boxing Hall of Fame, where he was enshrined in 2007.
But his fame came as an administrator. He joined the WBC in 1968 and was elected president of the sanctioning body Dec. 5, 1975. He served in that capacity until his death.
Under his leadership, the WBC instituted many rules and regulations regarding boxers’ safety and welfare, foremost among them reducing world championship bouts from 15 rounds to 12. That change was prompted by the death in the ring of Duk Koo Kim of South Korea during a 1983 nationally televised WBA title fight with Ray Mancini.
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