MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – The pinnacle of African soccer, Ahmad Ahmad, has been banned from soccer for 5 years by FIFA following an ethics investigation by world soccer’s governing physique.
Ahmad, who’s president of the Confederation of African Soccer (CAF), had supposed to face in an election in March through which he would have confronted numerous challengers.
FIFA mentioned in an announcement the unbiased Ethics Committee has discovered Ahmad responsible of providing and accepting presents and different advantages, and misappropriation of funds.
FIFA had “sanctioned him with a ban from all football-related exercise (administrative, sports activities or another) at each nationwide and worldwide degree for 5 years,” it mentioned.
It additionally fined him 200,000 Swiss francs ($200,000). Ahmad declined to remark when contacted by Reuters.
Former CAF basic secretary Amr Fahmy, who died earlier this yr from most cancers, had been dismissed after he made corruption allegations in opposition to Ahmad final yr in a doc despatched to FIFA.
The doc, despatched on March 31 2019 by Fahmy to a FIFA investigations committee and seen by Reuters, accused Ahmad of ordering his secretary-general to pay $20,000 bribes into accounts of African soccer affiliation presidents. They included Cape Verde and Tanzania.
The doc additionally accused Ahmad of costing CAF an additional $830,000 by ordering gear through a French middleman firm known as Tactical Metal. The corporate denied any wrongdoing and mentioned it had gained the contract on advantage.
Moreover, it accused him of harassing 4 feminine CAF employees, whom it didn’t title; violating statutes to extend Moroccan illustration inside the organisation; and over-spending greater than $400,000 of CAF cash on vehicles in Egypt and Madagascar, the place a satellite tv for pc workplace has been arrange for him.
Senior CAF officers, talking on situation of anonymity on the time of his dismissal, mentioned Fahmy was fired in reprisal for compiling the doc with the allegations in opposition to Ahmad.
Ahmad was questioned by French authorities in June, 2019 after he was taken from his Paris lodge and questioned by officers of OCLIF, the French police company preventing monetary crime and corruption, French media studies mentioned.
In August final yr, FIFA basic secretary Fatma Samoura was appointed “basic delegate” for Africa and took management of a big a part of CAF’s affairs.
In February, on the finish of that course of, a evaluate of CAF’s funds by Worth Waterhouse Cooper (PWC) was extremely vital of how the African organisation’s funds had been managed.
A duplicate of the 55-page report was seen by Reuters and outlined a sequence of considerations about CAF’s book-keeping.
“The accounting data of CAF are unreliable and never reliable,” mentioned the PWC report.
Based mostly upon the procedures carried out and paperwork reviewed, a number of crimson flags, potential components of mismanagement and attainable abuse of energy have been present in key areas of finance and operations of CAF.
“Given the intense nature of sure findings and crimson flags recognized from the preliminary due-diligence, we can not rule out the opportunity of potential irregularities.”