KEIR RADNEDGE in ZURICH: FIFA’s executive committee, in its last meeting before Friday’s crucial congress, has adjusted the mathematics of the voting for both the new president and the reforms package.
The world football federation always tries its utmost to bring all 209 member associations on board in time for its elections but political interference issues were too complex in the cases of both Indonesia and Kuwait.
A further review of the two countries’ current suspensions will not now take place until just before the ordinary congress in Mexico City in May. This reduces the maximum number of eligible votes on Friday to 207.
This affects, marginally, the presidential power bid of Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa from Bahrain since both Indonesia and Kuwait would have been considered a certain supporters for him rather than UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino.
If any of the five candidates is to win in the first round he will need a two-thirds majority of at least 138 votes rather than the previously assessed 139. To win by a simple majority in the second or subsequent rounds will require a simple majority of now 104 rather than 105 votes.
The voting standard for arguably the more important issue – the reforms – needs a three-quarters majority since this demands changes to statutes.
Here the ‘pass mark’ is 159.
The exco has issued a new appeal for all members to back the reforms which bring radical changes to the FIFA structure by restricting the power of the president, turning the exco into a strategic council, enforcing term limits on newcomers, cutting back the number of standing committees and bringing independent directors on board.
A statement from acting president Issa Hayatou said: “The eyes of the world are on us this week after one of the most challenging times in our history. The approval of the reforms will send a strong message that we have listened and that we are taking the action necessary to regain trust and improve our performance.
“Each of these measures is critical for the future of FIFA and global football. We urge each of the member associations to support the reforms in full, and then to implement them in their entirety at home. It is a collective responsibility we have for football.”
The exco approved new governance regulations to support the reform proposals as well as confirming:
1, Establishment of normalisation committees for the Honduran and Guatemalan FAs;
2, Extension of the mandate of the Football Association of Maldives normalisation committee;#
3, Removal of two members of the normalisation committee of the Benin FA;
4, Acceptance of changes to the Football Association of Thailand normalisation committee.
The newly elected CONMEBOL president Alejandro Domínguez (Paraguay) as well as members Luis Segura (Argentina/CONMEBOL) and Pedro Chaluja (Panama/CONCACAF) attended their first meeting of the exco.