ZURICH: The identity for the claimants to Sepp Blatter’s throne as FIFA president may not be known until the end of next month writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
The deadline for nominations for the election at FIFA Congress in May is next Thursday, January 29.
However Domenico Scala, the Swiss businessman who is independent chairman of the audit and compliance committee, has set out a precise and detailed timeline for the vetting system.
Blatter has indicated he intends to stand and other candidacies have been announced by Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan (FIFA’s Asian vice-president), Jerome Champagne (former FIFA official) and David Ginola (ex-France forward).
Scala and the now-departed ethics investigator Michael Garcia drew up formal electoral regulations last summer to try to ensure “a transparent and fair election process.”
The supervisory committee comprises by the chairmen of the disciplinary committee (Claudio Sulser from Switzerland), the appeal committee (Bermuda’s Larry Mussenden) and Scala.
Scala, explained via the FIFA website, that “it will take some time until the committee will be in a position to announce the candidates.”
Firstly, though January 29 is the deadline a further week is being allowed in case nominations are being submitted by registered post within the set date.
Then the investigatory chamber of the ethics committee must carry out an integrity check within a stipulated 10 day.
The next step sees the electoral committee checking whether candidates “have had an active role in association football for two of the last five years before being proposed as a candidate” as well as the requisite formal nominations by five national associations.
Scala said: “It goes without saying that we aim to do this as soon as possible.”
Candidates, such as Blatter himself, are permitted to remain in office during the election campaign but must avoid “conflicts of interest, in particular in the context of campaign funding.”
FIFA observers noted at last year’s Congress in Sao Paulo that it was finance director Markus Kattner who confirmed the ‘World Cup bonus’ pay-outs to national associations, rather than Blatter himself as in the past.
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