The director general of the French Football Federation (FFF) Florence Hardouin seized the Defender of Rights in the context of the dismissal procedure launched against her, we learned on Tuesday from one of her lawyers.
We have contacted the Defender of Rights to have the FFF's obstruction of Florence Hardouin's whistleblower status noted
", Me Margaux Mathieu told AFP, confirming information from the daily
The lawyer establishes a link between the denunciation of "
acts of harassment, criminally reprehensible
", made by Ms. Hardouin against the president of the Federation Noël Le Graët within the framework of the audit mission on the FFF, and the dismissal of the general manager the day after this testimony.
The disciplinary procedure initiated by his employer, following this denunciation, and in retaliation, is illegal.
Our client will challenge any sanction illegally taken against her by her employer
,” says Me Mathieu.
Provisional dismissal for serious misconduct
The 56-year-old leader, in office since 2013, was suspended on a precautionary basis for serious misconduct on January 11, following a federal executive committee which also approved the withdrawal of President Noël Le Graët.
On Tuesday, she chose not to attend the interview prior to her dismissal, we learned from concordant sources.
Initially scheduled for January 20, the interview had been postponed due to the health problems of Ms. Hardouin, hospitalized for a heart attack shortly after her layoff, then on sick leave.
The preliminary interview is a legal step that can lead to dismissal.
This is a right granted to the employee to defend himself and the latter is not required to honor it, without being blamed for his absence.
Appointed to the general management in 2013, the former fencer has long formed a united and effective tandem with Noël Le Graët, with an undeniable recovery of finances at the FFF to their credit.
However, their "
initial operational proximity turned into a toxic relationship
", according to the summary of the audit report on the FFF commissioned by the Ministry of Sports.
The document made public on February 15 also concludes that the director general "
is no longer able to carry out the missions which are hers
", due in particular to "
brutal management " and sometimes "
» vis-à-vis other employees.