IMMAF CEO Speaks at First Middle East Sport Integrity Summit

On 16 September, IMMAF CEO Densign White spoke at the first Inter-Regional Summit in the Middle East focused on the issue of preserving integrity in sport.

“The Middle East is a hotbed for investment in sports development. This summit provides a ripe opportunity to strengthen international collaboration with the region and to focus on the issue of integrity in sport in a local context, ” said White.

Organised by the Sport Integrity Global Alliance (SIGA), of which IMMAF is a member and its CEO a Council delegate, ‘Sport Integrity – The Power of Collective Action in the Middle East, Asia and Africa’, took place in Doha, Qatar, under the patronage of HE Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, Minister of Culture and Sport of Qatar.

The event was co-hosted by the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS) and Qatar Airways, with whom the IMMAF CEO met to discuss sponsorship opportunities with IMMAF.

The SIGA Inter-Regional Summit is an independent platform to address key matters of regional significance, bringing together thought leaders and international experts from the world of sport, international organisations, governments, global business and civil society.

During the Summit, a series of high-level panels sessions and speeches explored critical issues, such as:

  • Collective Action and The Global Push for Sport Integrity
  • Qatar: Host Nation of The First Mega Sporting Events in The Region
  • Major Sports: What is Being Done to Ensure the Highest Integrity?
  • The Power of Clean Sport and Its Role in Our Regions
  • Championing Sport Integrity on The Field of Play
  • Sport Integrity: A Catalyst for Development, Legacy and Peace
  • Sport Integrity and Global Business
  • Global Challenges, Regional Approaches and International Cooperation

On the sidelines of the event the Qatar Stars League (QSL) became the first professional league in Asia to sign an agreement with an international organisation committed to sport integrity, as it signed with SIGA. The agreement aims at exchanging experience, joint tasks, presenting the best practices, exchanging information, methods, ideas and activities by establishing the concepts of integrity and transparency in football.

HE Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, Minister of Culture and Sports for the State of Qatar stated that hosting the SIGA Inter-Regional Summit reflected Qatar’s proactive role and the country’s efforts to safeguard ethics and promote sports for good for the world’s communities.

He said: “It is significant to consider both regional and global factors in realizing these goals and work on strengthening the cooperation with stakeholders and federations as well as UN organisations and NGOs.”

IMMAF Welcomes the Hong Kong MMA Federation

The International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) welcomes the Hong Kong MMA Federation (HKMMAF) as its newest member.

IMMAF’s national representative in Hong Kong is magnifying MMA as a sport, with an aim to become a National Sports Association under the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China. It is also supported by JUST MMA, Hong Kong’s leading professional MMA promotor.

HKMMAF President and JUST MMA Chairman, Andrew Chan [pictured], said:

“Hong Kong has a rich history in martial arts, and its international status has attracted an unbelievable variety of offerings. The introduction of amateur MMA, being a common platform for competition, will be the most exciting development for all athletes.”

“Having organised 5 professional events in Hong Kong, Macau and China in the past two years, we were amazed by the level of participation from both athletes and spectators. We are certain that the sport will grow dramatically in coming years. And with a quality supply of coaches and training facilities, Hong Kong will generate a good number of professional and amateur athletes.”

“HKMMAF is formed as a platform to help the MMA community to promote and grow the sport in a safe and fair manner. We rely on every member of the community to contribute and to take ownership in being part of the exciting MMA development in Hong Kong.”

The Hong Kong Federation is composed of officials, coaches, athletes, and professionals from the fields of medicine, law, media and finance. It will initially focus on building a structure for amateur competition under the IMMAF framework – rules, officiation, medical support…etc. This will be followed by introducing the IMMAF certification program for coaches, referees and cutman.

Representing one of the most accessible cities in the region, the HKMMAF is well placed to organise events across the region and its aim is to support the promotion of MMA across Asia.

IMMAF Welcomes the Hong Kong MMA Federation

The International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) welcomes the Hong Kong MMA Federation (HKMMAF) as its newest member.

IMMAF’s national representative in Hong Kong is magnifying MMA as a sport, with an aim to become a National Sports Association under the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China. It is also supported by JUST MMA, Hong Kong’s leading professional MMA promotor.

HKMMAF President and JUST MMA Chairman, Andrew Chan [pictured], said:

“Hong Kong has a rich history in martial arts, and its international status has attracted an unbelievable variety of offerings. The introduction of amateur MMA, being a common platform for competition, will be the most exciting development for all athletes.”

“Having organised 5 professional events in Hong Kong, Macau and China in the past two years, we were amazed by the level of participation from both athletes and spectators. We are certain that the sport will grow dramatically in coming years. And with a quality supply of coaches and training facilities, Hong Kong will generate a good number of professional and amateur athletes.”

“HKMMAF is formed as a platform to help the MMA community to promote and grow the sport in a safe and fair manner. We rely on every member of the community to contribute and to take ownership in being part of the exciting MMA development in Hong Kong.”

The Hong Kong Federation is composed of officials, coaches, athletes, and professionals from the fields of medicine, law, media and finance. It will initially focus on building a structure for amateur competition under the IMMAF framework – rules, officiation, medical support…etc. This will be followed by introducing the IMMAF certification program for coaches, referees and cutman.

Representing one of the most accessible cities in the region, the HKMMAF is well placed to organise events across the region and its aim is to support the promotion of MMA across Asia.

IMMAF CEO: Members Not Permitted to Take Part in Other MMA Federation Events

The IMMAF CEO, Densign White, has today issued the following letter to IMMAF | WMMAA members:

Dear Members,

As IMMAF recognises just one national governing body for MMA per country, IMMAF members are likewise committed to recognising IMMAF (or IMMAF | WMMAA) as the sole international governing body for mixed martial arts.

IMMAF is the only International Federation representing MMA globally that meets the criteria set out by the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to be a recognised member.

I am, therefore, reminding you of your obligations to IMMAF as outlined in our Code of Ethics:

3.13 Membership to other international Mixed Martial Arts federations We will be a member of the IMMAF | WMMAA and no other one international mixed martial arts federation and will not engage in MMA related activities with these organizations.

3.14 National team competitors competing in non-sanctioned events National team members are barred from competing in non-sanctioned events or mixed martial arts events held by another international federation. Noncompliance can lead to barring from participation in future events held by the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation.

I would like to thank you for your continued support.

Yours in sport,


Densign White CEO

Eliezer Kubanza, Africa’s Highest Ranked Amateur MMA Talent Aims to Make All Africa Proud at 2019 World Championships

In 1957 Kwame Nkrumah led the nation of Ghana to independence as the country’s first Prime Minister. He famously stated: “I am not African because I was born in Africa but because Africa was born in me.”

Nkrumah was an outspoken advocate for the liberation and union of Africa as a whole. While his movement was unsuccessful, ending with a military coup in 1966, many share the perspective that, when you are born in Africa, you a part of an unbounded culture and community.

In contrast to Europe, Asia or the Americas, these sentiments are noticeably embodied within the people of Africa and often amplified by the sporting heroes of African nations. At the 2019 IMMAF – WMMAA World Championships, 22-year-old amateur MMA standout, Eliezer Kubanza looks to following in their footsteps.

above: Kubanza receives his 2019 Africa Open gold medal

Hailing from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kubanza is Africa’s highest ranked amateur MMA contender and two-time IMMAF Africa Open gold medalist, winning the continental title in 2017 and again in 2019. He occupies 8th place in the senior middleweight rankings and 29th in the pound-for-pound standings featuring over 750 senior level men and women.

13 African nations are currently represented as members of IMMAF – WMMAA with South Africa leading as the continent’s most decorated national team and serving as regular hosts of the Africa Open Championships since 2017. South Africa has won three gold medals at the IMMAF World Championships, but not since 2016 when the last to do so was men’s lightweight challenger, “Relentless” Roedie Roets.

Alongside Team South Africa, athletes from Algeria, Cameroon, Congo, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Mauritius, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, the Seychelles and Tunisia are set to compete on the world’s premier and most inclusive platform for amateur MMA.

Looking ahead to the 2019 IMMAF – WMMAA World Championships, taking place in Bahrain from 11-16 November, Africa’s top medal prospect is not only committed to stepping on the world championships podium as the first Congolese athlete to make it, but to claim the gold medal and pave the way for future generations of African hopefuls in the sport of MMA.

“We are trying to make our continent proud and bring it up like other professionals from Africa are doing, to be number-one and make all Africa proud,” Kubanza told IMMAF.org.

With a current amateur record of 7-2, Kubanza has established himself as a dangerous knockout artist with great athletic potential. Holding a 100% KO ratio in his winning performances, Kubanza has forced 6 knockout stoppages to date alongside a single triangle choke submission.

In addition to Kubanza, the Democratic Republic of Congo MMA Federation aims to dispatch a quartet of representatives incuding 2019 Africa Open bronze medalist, Chadrack Lomboto (men’s lightweight), Joslin Nkuni (men’s featherweight) and Kasese Muntamba (light-heavyweight).

“Training is going 100% good and I’m better than before,” Kubanza added, “my ground game and BJJ is getting better as well, I think I will be 100% ready for this World Championships .”