By Emily Goddard

Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein is confident the FEI's future in the Olympics will be safe without a President who is also an IOC member ©Getty ImagesInternational Equestrian Federation (FEI) President Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein has spoken of her confidence in the future of the world governing body beyond the completion of her last term in office in December.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) member, who will lose this status once she steps down as President of the FEI, will leave after eight years at the head of the organisation, she revealed yesterday.

So far, one person - Swiss businessman Pierre Genecand - has declared his candidacy to replace the incumbent leader, but the FEI told insidethegames today that "the candidates will be announced once the deadline [September 1] has passed".

If he ultimately is elected as FEI President it will mean the organisation will no longer have a President who is also an IOC member.

But this is not something that concerns Princess Haya as she believes the FEI Olympic Council will keep communication channels open between her organisation and the IOC.

"I don't believe the influence of the equestrian family rests on my shoulders alone or should ever logically rest on the influence of one person, that would very much undermine what I said to be the values of the Olympic family and of sport in general," she said.

"We have created an Olympic Council, not only to preserve our place in the Games but also to allow us to be in touch with those members who are members of our sport and to help them to understand the changes that are happening in our sport.

"The Olympic Council will hopefully be there for all eternity and that's something that will allow us to take pride in our place in the Olympic family and to ensure that if there is a President of the FEI that is not an IOC there will be voices within the IOC from our sport.

"The IOC membership [or lack thereof] should not stop the forward march of the FEI."

Pierre Genecand is the only FEI Presidential candidate so far ©FacebookPierre Genecand is the only FEI Presidential candidate so far ©Facebook

Princess Haya was also keen to highlight that the next FEI President does not have to be an official with a title or royal connections, as has predominantly been the case so far in the 93-year history of the body.

"When I was elected everyone was saying, 'This federation has always been lead by a person with a title'," she explained.

"But what I want to ensure is that the best qualified person can come and that they don't have to have a strong financial background and they don't have to have the contacts and really what they have to do is be able to uphold the confidence of our community and our sport.

"That's what would make me happy."

The election of the new FEI President is due to take place at the international governing body's General Assembly in Azerbaijan's capital Baku on December 14 this year.

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