No formal disciplinary action to be taken against RFL CEO Ralph Rimmer after his inappropriate comments made about the Fijian national team

The RFL have decided no formal disciplinary action is appropriate for Ralph Rimmer following comments made by the CEO about the Fiji national team.

Rimmer was speaking at the end of season awards event for the Betfred Championship and League One when he made the following inappropriate comments about the Fijians arriving ahead of the upcoming World Cup.

He said: “Fiji have already arrived. We don’t think anybody has been arrested yet, do we? No, we’re alright, so we’re going pretty well then.”

The event was broadcast live on the Our League app and received massive backlash due to Rimmer’s comments which he has since apologized for.

The RFL have released the following statement surrounding the incident just now;

‘As previously confirmed by the RFL, following receipt of a complaint in relation to comments made by the CEO, Ralph Rimmer, at the Championship and League One Awards Dinner on September 26, relevant procedures have been followed under the Directors’ Code of Conduct, led by the RFL Chair, Simon Johnson.

The Chair has now submitted a 21-page report to the RFL Board and to Ralph Rimmer

The procedures involved the gathering of information and opinion from three independent experts, in addition to a number of attendees at the dinner, and a statement from Ralph Rimmer. Views from the Fiji Rugby League and their World Cup travelling party were also sought.

The report concluded that the language fell within the wide definition of unacceptable language as defined in the RFL’s Operational Rules, and therefore could be considered to breach the Code of Conduct.

However it noted that the comment was taken within the context of a wider discussion of the World Cup; that any insult of the Fiji National Team or of people from Fiji or of Fijian origin or heritage was unintended; and that the Fiji National Team, the Federation and the Confederation have accepted Ralph Rimmer’s apology for the comments.

Noting the agreement of all consulted that there was no intent in the use of the unacceptable language; that a fulsome apology was issued and accepted; and taking into account relevant and applicable precedent, from other sports and previous RFL compliance investigations, the decision of the Chair is that no formal disciplinary action is appropriate – the matter will be dealt with through education, to be conducted during the three months before Ralph Rimmer’s previously announced departure from the RFL at the end of the year.’

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