The mayor of South Korean city Gwangju, which is hoping to host the 2019 world swimming championships, will face criminal charges after he allegedly forged signatures of key officials in a bid document, a government official said on Friday.
Kang Un-tae has been accused of forging the signatures of former prime minister Kim Hwang-sik and former culture minister Choe Kwang-sik in a bid document that guaranteed financial aid from the government for the event.
Budapest and Abu Dhabi are the other two cities bidding to host the gathering with world governing body FINA due to announce the winner later on Friday ahead of the 15th world championships in Barcelona.
An official at the Gwangju Metropolitan City, who refused to be identified, fumed over the timing of the allegations and said the authorities should have waited for the FINA announcement before going public.
“I do not understand why the central government is bursting bubbles at the last minute. Why now and with what kind of intention? The timing is suspicious…” he told Reuters.