ZURICH: Domenico Scala, the Swiss businessman tasked with steering FIFA towards its new presidential election, has urged Sepp Blatter to end his teasing of the media over his departure writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
Blatter announced his impending departure only four days after being re-elected as head of the world football federation at the end of May.
Since then, however, his comments about the form of his departure have brought FIFA further unnecessary and unsettling bad publicity.
Scala, independent chairman of the audit and compliance committee set up under the recent reform project, has issued a request for an end to mischief making.
In a terse statement, Scala said: “I call on all concerned, including Mr. Blatter, to endorse in the interest of the reforms unequivocally the announced changing of the guard at the head of FIFA. The time for flirting with power through the media is finally over.”
One issue yet to be settled is the date of the extraordinary election congress. December 16 had appeared a favoured date until Blatter, last week, suggested early 2016 so as not to interfere with the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan.
Seven senior FIFA-linked officials remain in jail in Switzerland awaiting extradition applications from the United States Justice Department over the so-called FIFAgate corruption scandal.
The Swiss courts rejected an application for bail or house arrest from one, believed to be the Uruguayan former president of the South Amrican confederation, Eugenio Figueredo.
Brazilian media have reported that family of friends of another detainee, ex-CBF president Jose Maria Marin, are angry in the belief that the country’s football confederation has abandoned him.
Less than a day after Marin’s arrest his successor, Marco Polo Del Nero, fled Zurich for fear of arrest. He is back in Brazil safe from extradition, as a Brazilian citizen.
Del Nero did not even attend the Copa America in Chile, commiserating only by telephone with coach Dunga after Brazil’s defeat on penalties by Paraguay in the quarter-finals.