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Stats: 1063267 members, 1236816 topics. Date: Friday, 24 May 2013 at 11:34 PM
Is Threatening The Nigerian Political Class The Solution To Nigeria's Problems? / Achievements Of Nigeria Political Class- The House Of Rep / Are Nigerians Resident In Uk Jealous Of Their Visiting Counterparts ? (1) (2) (3) (4)
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 9:35am On May 16, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 9:38am On May 16, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by AjanleKoko: 10:20am On May 16, 2011|
Nice compilations. In a way, this doesn't really justify the lack of responsibility and profligiate attitude of our own political class.
The problem is not really with their actions, but more with their inaction. I was reading in BusinessDay last week about how the legislators now receive bribes to pass laws. Case in point the PIB. And it's symptomatic of everything Nigerian. We simply do not take responsibility for anything.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 10:31am On May 16, 2011|
I am not trying to justiy the evils of our own politicians but simply want us to keep things in proper perspective - politicians are the same all over the world. They would lie, steal and kill if necessary. Unfortunately, some of us are too passionate in our support for tem to see them for what they really are.
That is not to say there aren't honourble men and women among them.
On the issue of receivig bribes to pass bills, it should come as no surprise. Since the early days of our "nascent" democracy, we have been told by the likes of El-Rufai about syndicates in the senate who allegedly collect bribes to approve nominations to ministerial positions. I first heard stories about senators collecting bribes to pass bills some years ago. It is sad.
Well, in some developed countries politicians collect campaign donations (from/through lobbyists) not bribes!
Please, let no one call for my head for saying that!
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by AjanleKoko: 10:58am On May 16, 2011|
It might be down to system of governance.
In the Gulf countries, there is little controversy regarding government officials, as they are always appointed by the monarchy, rather than elected into office. So maybe what we need is some sort of Emperor I guess
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 11:18am On May 16, 2011|
That would make things worse o!
I prefer this present system to a monarchy or miitary rule.
At least with this one, I am free to post like I am doing now. We can also write petitions against those we are not satified with (http://www.nairaland.com/nigeria/topic-667714.0.html#msg8329140)
At least we have government of the people, by some people, for some people.
Jammeh of Gambia is planning to make himself a monarch (one of the tricks of despots to hang on to power - remember Empreror Bokasa?):
Look at what is happening in Egypt (after the military hijacked the revolution) and Bahrain.
There is no room for dissent in those places. It is government of some people, for some people and by some people.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by AjanleKoko: 11:32am On May 16, 2011|
You are so right.
To make democracy truly a government of the people, the people must protect their interests rather than just sit back and expect their political reps to do right by them. I think the same happens even in developed countries; the people are so comfortable that they just believe any spin from the political class. Imagine the American people not even requesting any account rendering by their governments, after trillions of USD had been wasted in irrational military campaigns. So long as they can stay in their credit bubble, shopping and living their American dream, they could not care less. Until the financial meltdown arrived, of course.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 12:14pm On May 16, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 9:12am On May 19, 2011|
Sarkozy vs. Strauss-Kahn: Sex as a Weapon?
Nicolas Sarkozy and Dominique Stauss-Kahn were never friends — one conservative, the other Socialist, their political ambitions setting them on a collision course. Yet, soon after Sarkozy's 2007 election as President of France, he surprised most people by nominating Strauss-Kahn to be Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, a heartening reach across party lines. Others, however, saw a more devious motive: Sarkozy was moving his most potent challenger to the IMF's Washington, D.C. headquarters and depriving the freshly defeated Socialist Party of his charisma and leadership. The last four years, according to political observers in France, have been full of similar subtle and not-so-subtle maneuvers as both men prepared for what had been prophesied as a fierce battle for the French Presidency in 2012.
Sarkozy has taken the requisite "innocent until proven guilty" position about Strauss-Kahn and his catastrophic legal situation in the U.S. But few observers believe the French President is grieving. Sarkozy knew he had been lucky back in 2007 not to have faced the popular Strauss-Kahn at the polls (instead, the Socialists fielded the attractive but disorganized Ségolène Royal.) During a 2006 lunch discussion, a Sarkozy adviser told TIME how relieved he and his boss were that Strauss-Kahn was not running. "Of course," said the adviser with a smile, "if he did run, he'd probably ruin his own chances by getting caught in some woman's bed." (See pictures of Sarkozy in the U.S.)
Indeed, certain analysts argue that the French President may have been betting on rather cynical odds: that by sending a notorious libertine to the puritanical Mecca of America in the first place — and to the political correct strictures of the rigid IMF in particular — Sarkozy was simply giving Strauss-Kahn enough rope to hang himself with. That may explain why it was that on Monday, the daily Le Figaro quoted Sarkozy responding to the news out of New York with a reminder that he'd alerted Strauss-Kahn of the risks of being a seducteur. "I warned him about this!"
Sarkozy wasn't the only one. Shortly after Strauss-Kahn won the IMF job, Jean Quatremer — a journalist for the left-leaning Libération, wrote in an otherwise glowing profile of Strauss-Kahn that "the only real problem for Strauss-Kahn is his relation to women. Too forward. He often borders on harassment. It is a problem known to the media but that nobody talks about (we are in France). And the IMF is an international organization with Anglo-Saxon sensibilities. One out-of-line move and, "
Already sensitive to the issue, Strauss-Kahn's staff were not happy with the comment. This week Quatremer recalled that "a few hours after the publication of this piece, I receive a call from Ramzi Khiroun, one of Dominique Strauss-Kahn communcation people: 'We know you like DSK [as he is known in France] and we don't understand at all why your published this piece.' The tone was friendly (he spoke to me with the informal 'tu' although we'd never met), not angry, just saddened: how could I have done such an underhanded thing to his mentor?, I knew that I was breaking a taboo. And Ramzi Khiroun even dared to ask me to erase the piece from my blog 'so as not to harm Dominique.' Such a scene is unimaginable in a modern democracy."
As it turned out, Quatremer (and Sarkozy) were prescient. In 2008, Strauss-Kahn was forced to admit he'd engaged in a intimate affair with Hungarian economist Piroska Nagy — who was his subordinate at the IMF. It was not quite the fatal misstep: Strauss-Kahn, though reprimanded, kept his job. Nagy eventually lost hers as part of a cost-cutting measure. (Be Intimate Assault Charges Killed the Presidential Hopes of the IMF Chief?)
But that career crisis focused Strauss-Kahn and his staff on the fact that his intimate behavior could be used as a weapon against him when he eventually returned to French politics. A team of political advisers and communications experts was dispatched to Washington to help him spin the Nagy scandal and limit the PR damage. As part of that, according to D.S.K.: The Secrets of a Presidential Contender, a 2010 book about Strauss-Kahn, his minders told their boss to "stick to business and forget his hormone count." A seemingly contrite Strauss-Kahn appeared to do just that, not only dedicating himself to his increasingly urgent (and much-applauded) IMF response to successive economic crises around the world, but also working with French media to restore his image as a dedicated husband.
French conservative officials loyal to Sarkozy watched in horror as Strauss-Kahn's already high approval numbers resumed their ascent. A poll in late 2009 found that Strauss-Kahn was the leading figure the French public said it wanted to see play a larger role in the future. Meanwhile, Sarkozy's own s ratings continued to decline, setting record lows for the post-war French presidency. Sarkozy allies decided to escalate the sex war, voicing overt warnings in the press that they'd go public with proof of Strauss-Kahn's lamentable private behavior if he chose to run for president — referring to long-rumored incriminating photos of Strauss-Kahn caught in flagrante delicto. A book that came out around the time quoted a Sarkozy intimate and the ruling party's spokesman noting that if Strauss-Kahn ever ran for president "he wouldn't last a week. We have the photos — they exist! We'll pass them around, and the French people wouldn't like that." Strauss-Kahn responded by threatening a libel suit; the party spokesman denied having ever made the statement. (See what Strauss-Kahn's arrest means for the IMF.)
The rumored photos have been bandied about as a potential weapon for years. One political analyst said 18 months ago that he wagered Strauss-Kahn would never run for president, because "in addition to all the stories of his intimate activity, there are photographs. They're real. And no politician would ever survive what's in them if they ever went public." An advisor to a current government minister told TIME that while he'd never seen the photographs, he had it on solid grounds that they not only existed, but could even lead to criminal charges.
The goading rumors clearly got under Strauss-Kahn's skin. As first reported by the weekly Le Point, at the G20 meeting in September 2009 in Pittsburgh, he cornered the president as both men stood before neighboring urinals, warning Sarkozy, "I've had more than enough of the repeated rumors about my private life and the supposed files and photos that could come out to undermine me. I know it's all coming from the Elysée. So tell your boys to stop or I'll take legal action." Sarkozy reportedly denied having any hand in the campaign.
The pictures, if they ever existed, have never materialized. But Strauss-Kahn was obsessed with their being used as a threat. At the end of April, at an informal meeting with editors of the left-leaning daily Libération, he railed that "For years people have said there are photos of giant sin assemblies but I've never seen any of them turn up, Why don't they produce them, then?"
If the charges against him prove to be true, Strauss-Kahn's enemies no longer need to produce any kind of photographs. With reporting by Jeffrey T. Iverson/Paris
France's President Nicolas Sarkozy speaks to International Monetary Fund Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the opening of the G20 finance ministers and central bank governors meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris February 18, 2011.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 8:28am On May 25, 2011|
[b]Why Don't Men Like Schwarzenegger, John Edwards Use Condoms?[/b]By Susan Milligan
Posted: May 18, 2011
The revelation that former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger fathered a child a decade ago with a woman who was not his wife—a disclosure that comes just a couple of years after we learned that onetime Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards had done the same thing—begs an important question:
Exactly what century are we in?
The issue here isn’t even why a married person would Be Intimate outside his or her marriage, which is not an infrequent occurrence now or at previous points in history. It’s not even about how a public person thinks he or she could behave that way without anyone finding out. Edwards, after all, was castigated for doing something so reckless and foolish during a time when he was under intense media scrutiny. But the fact that Schwarzenegger was able to keep this a secret for the entire time he was in the governor’s mansion is astounding, and suggests maybe Edwards wasn’t as delusional as some people thought. [Check out a roundup of this month's best political cartoons.]
But has it not occurred to these men to use a condom? Birth control is readily available. It’s legal. It’s simple to use. And it limits the fallout from an affair. Learning of a past intimate dalliance would understandably be very upsetting to a spouse. Learning that a child was produced from the union is devastating and adds a living, breathing reminder of the episode, a pain compounded by the fact that it is not the child’s fault that he or she is a walking symbol of marital betrayal.
But seriously, if a woman approaches a man and says, "you are so hot," as Rielle Hunter reportedly said to Edwards, does it not occur to the man that she might not mind having a permanent connection to the candidate a child would secure? And what was Schwarzenegger thinking when he Were Intimate with someone who actually worked for the family? Did he not consider the possibility of pregnancy? [Read 10 things you didn't know about Schwarzenegger.]
Perhaps the use of birth control adds to any guilt the men might feel; if the episode is planned, it is more difficult to convince oneself that passion was to blame. It’s sort of the counter-argument to those who believe that providing birth control to sexually active young people will give them ideas about sex they wouldn’t otherwise have. More likely, they are thinking about sex, and while it may not be wise to engage in sex at a young age because of the emotional implications, the physical consequences of sex without birth control are far more serious. One would think adult men would know that by now.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 8:33am On May 25, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 8:46am On May 25, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 8:48am On May 25, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 8:52am On May 25, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 9:13am On May 25, 2011|
Former Presidential Candidate John Edwards Faces Indictment for Campaign Violations
Published May 25, 2011
WASHINGTON -- Prosecutors can seek an indictment against former North Carolina Senator and two-time Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards for allegedly using campaign donations to cover up an extra-marital affair and love child, ABC News reported late Tuesday.
The network, citing sources, said the Department of Justice has given the go-ahead for Edwards to be prosecuted and the former politician has been informed of the development.
Edwards may now accept a plea deal or face trial.
Edwards, 57, has been the target of a lengthy federal grand jury investigation into allegations of campaign violations related to his relationship with mistress Rielle Hunter.
As Edwards made his second run for the White House, he began an affair with Hunter -- an aide who worked as a videographer on his campaign -- that was uncovered by the National Enquirer in late 2007.
Edwards finally admitted to the affair in August 2008, having initially denied that he was the father of Hunter's daughter Frances Quinn Hunter, who was born in February 2008.
The allegations in the federal investigation concern more than $1 million that was used to hide Hunter from public view.
The amount was paid by two big-time donors -- 100-year-old heiress and philanthropist Rachel "Bunny" Mellon and Edwards' 2008 finance chairman Fred Baron, who died in 2008.
Prior to his death, Baron admitted that he had paid money to help hide Hunter from the press, but denied that Edwards had any knowledge of the arrangement.
Former Edwards campaign aide Andrew Young -- who lived with Hunter while she was in hiding, initially claimed to be the father of the baby girl as a favor to Edwards, and has since written a tell-all book about the campaign -- has said that Edwards definitely knew about the money, and even solicited it.
A prominent trial lawyer before being elected to his North Carolina Senate seat in 1998, Edwards came second in the 2004 Democratic primary race and was then selected by the eventual nominee, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), to be his vice presidential running-mate.
Edwards' wife, Elizabeth Edwards, died late last year after a battle with cancer.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by AjanleKoko: 10:24pm On May 25, 2011|
Keep it coming, johnie. Nice ones!
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 1:48pm On May 27, 2011|
Let's turn our attention from the conventional politicians now.
Let's look at FIFA's high tension politics and corruption.
We start with this 15 November 2000 article:
Politics and Corruption in FIFA[b]
By Jens Weinreich, Thomas Kistner
15 November 2000 [/b]
Sport reporters Jens Weinreich and Thomas Kistner review the strange ways television rights are sold in FIFA, president Blatter's election in 1998 and the circumstances around the selection of Germany as host for the World Cup 2006.
Dear friends and colleagues,
First of all a brief apology: The most competent speaker on this item, Politics and corruption in FIFA, can not be with us. Mr. Joseph Blatter, the president of FIFA and member of the IOC, has more urgent things to do these days.
In Brazil he has been invited to appear as a witness in a corruption inquiry being carried out by the Congress. The Senators and Congressmen are investigating the longtime-closest friends of Mr. Blatter: The honorary FIFA-president Joao Havelange and his former son-in-law, the FIFA Executive Member Ricardo Teixeira. In Brazil, it seems, nobody really knows what happened to the 400 million US$ from the world-famous Nike-contract.
In addition, Blatter has to raise the enormous sum of about 250 million US$. This is, as far as we can count, the money he promised to all national and continental federations to make him president in June 1998 at the FIFA congress in Paris. We will come back to this election later.
Corruption in Fifa. Today we will not talk about this because the Brazilian parliament is currently investigating. By the way, the Congress has just stripped 19 Brazilian FIFA registered players' agents of their banking secrecy. They want to do the same with Teixeira, who is also president of the national federation, and with his secret economic ally Jos Havilla, who owns the marketing company Traffic. This company is getting most of the valuable marketing and TV contracts in brazilian football.
The similarity of the discussions in Brazil and here in Copenhagen shows once more that there are indeed serious problems with corruption in the world of soccer.
We have written a book about this and hundreds of articles. We discovered, that the old boys connection is still working well. It is the same connection Andrew Jennings mentioned last Sunday. Just a few keywords: Blatter, Havelange, ISL, Adidas, Dassler, Guelfi. Keywords which are also very important for and very well kmown within the International Olympic Committee.
Three questions about FIFA's ideas of democracy and transparency
Lets have a look at what came out of the promises which candidat Blatter made to the world of soccer in his presidential campaign two years ago: A lot more democracy and transparency in the so-called FIFA family. That's not our joke. That's what he is still talking about.
We do not want to tell you all the stories, but rather make some remarks regarding three topics:
1. How is FIFA selling its rights for television and sponsoring?
2. How does FIFA elect its president?
3. How is FIFA selecting the host country for the World Cup?
Two days ago we listened to the speech made by German TV-manager Stefan Kürten: The bidding game. It was funny that Mr. Kürten told us that the federations have to play the role of referees. This is really not their function. On the contrary, their task is getting the most money out of the bidding process, in regard of the sport and the public. And now let's look how FIFA conducted itself in the bid for the actual television rights.
An exchange of letters between FIFA and a bidding company
We are happy to present to you quotations from letters that were exchanged between one bidding company and FIFA's Mr. Blatter.
It began on 18th August 1995 with a strictly confidential letter from Eric Drossart, IMG International Group Vice President, to Joseph S. Blatter, at this time General Secretary of FIFA.
Quote: Dear Sepp (, ) We are now in the position that IMG wishes to make a joint offer together with Ufa (Bertelsmann/d. A.) for the exclusive acquisition of worldwide broadcast rights for the World Cup 2002, plus the companion sponsorship and licensing rights for the event if available. With this letter IMG/Ufa are offering to pay a fee to FIFA of US$ 1 billion (one billion), on a payment schedule to be agreed.(, )
Kindest regards, Eric Drossart.
Do we understand this correctly? Is there a company throwing 1 billion dollars on the table, right out of the blue? Copies of this letter went to then FIFA president Havelange and all Executive Commission Members? Poor Mr. Drossart from IMG, he did not know that he had just committed his first big mistake.
Blatter answered, 11 days later.
Quote: Dear Eric (, ) thank you for your valuable offer (, ) We shall analyse your proposal very carefully and revert to the subject as soon as possible. Nevertheless, we have to express our surprise at the way the letter to the General Secretary of FIFA was termed strictly confidential but copies were sent to all the members of the FIFA Executive Committee (, ) We are not convinced that this was the most suitable method of communicating (, )
Blatter was upset. But the question is: Why? FIFA's Executive Committee was the governing body and his boss. According to the statutes he had to serve the Committee.
They went on exchanging lots of letters. Drossart kept on asking for bidding details and timetables. Blatter's answers had no content. And worse: He kept on changing the agenda. Poor Mr. Drossart had to learn in spring 1996 that FIFA was now planing to sell the TV rights in a package for 2002 and 2006.
Then, on April 18th, Blatter wrote to Drossart: It is our pleasure to enclose herewith a copy of the Minimum Conditions for the Broadcast of the 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cup, which are mandatory. Should your company still be interested in the rights described in the above-mentioned letter, we kindly invite you to submit your proposal on the basis of its contents by noon on the 15th May 1996.
Look at this! FIFA was suddenly offering a billion-dollar-deal until 2006, but the bidding company is getting less than 4 weeks to evaluate and arrange its offer. Is this the correct way to handle such a deal or did FIFA already have an agreement with another company?
Drossart was furious. He answered: I must admit that I am amazed by the content of your letter (, ) There are glaring inconsistencies in your letters to us concerning the basis on which the rights are being made available and such obvious preferential treatment being given to other parties (, ) that as of today it is difficult to believe that FIFA genuinely wish to consider our offer on a properly competitive basis. Your most recent letter has also failed to clarify a number of critical issues (, ) FIFAs position on consolidating the rights on offer has changed 180 degrees since November 1995.
Sepp, it is very difficult to conclude anything other than there being two sets of rules in operation here, one for the old partners CCC (EBU/d. A.) and ISL, and one for the rest, and your responses to our efforts are merely a cosmetic exercise designed to protect FIFA from future accusations of unfair and improper conduct.
Poor Mr. Drossart was now desperate. Now he understood that he had never had a real chance to get the TV rights. Regardless of the money he would offer.
But in the end the biggest surprise was for IMG and all other bidding companies, including the old FIFA-partner EBU. Blatter had only dealt with ISL, and this was why the new and hidden ISL partner Leo Kirch got the contract for 2002 and 2006. As we heard from Mr. Kürten the other day, this was the worst loss in EBU history. And what happened with the marketing rights? The same curious procedure, the same company got them in the end. ISL.
Why did Blatter and Havelange have to sell the FIFA rights again and again to their closest personal friends at ISL? And do not forget: We are talking about contracts worth more than 3.5 billion swiss francs.
An election overshadowed by suspicions of corruption
Now let's change the subject. Another impressive example of the lack of democracy and the omnipresence of corrupt circumstances in FIFA is the so-called election of president Blatter in 1998.
David Will, the Scottish vice president and lawyer, summed it all up some days after the decision in Paris. He said the suspicion of corruption will always overshadow this election. But, nevertheless, none of Blatter's opponents in the Johansson camp were clever enough to take legal action.
What happened? Lying was a standard technique for Mr. Blatter, then general secretary of FIFA. Blatter used the powerful FIFA administration to run his presidential campaign. Of course, this was against the rules and statutes of FIFA, and against a decision of the Executive Board. And the old dictator, Havelange, wrote personal letters to African delegates, inviting them on his private account to come to the election meeting, promising development aid etc. The typical way of giftgiving in the world of sports.
It was also very interesting to see which supporting countries Blatter presented when he announced his late candidacy in April 1998. Among these 15 countries were significant federations and football powerhouses such as Algeria, Libya, Lebanon and Guinea.
But only a few weeks later he won by an almost incredible margin: 111 to 80 votes. Surprise, surprise! Not only Lennart Johansson, the swedish UEFA-president, was wondering what happened the night before in the Meridien Montparnasse, the hotel in which most of the African delegates were based. Mogidius Braun, the president of the German federation, called it a dirty game, full of dirty tricks.
What was it that made a lot of African delegates change their minds so quickly in the last few hours? Only a short time before they had stood together hand in hand with Issa Hayatou, the chief of the African confederation CAF and FIFA vice president and promised their support for Johansson.
The next day we talked to Hayatou. He confirmed that the talk was all about money, all night in the Meridien Hotel. Hayatou himself got a phone call around midnight as he was preparing to retire for the night. He was urged to come over immediately from his Hotel, the Bristol, to the Meridien. When he arrived there a lot of African delegates asked him how much money they could get from CAF. He also confirmed what other observers said: It was bargaining like in a bazaar.
What does it mean, when hours before the most important election in the world of football and, maybe, in the world of sport, dozens of delegates - all of them members of the so called FIFA-family - are running around talking about money, money, money.
Blatter kept on lying when he declared on several occasions that he had never visited the Meridien Hotel until the day of his election. We have another impression: We watched him two days before the election in the Salon Modigliani making a flaming speech in front of the delegates from North and Central America.
How Germany won the World Cup 2006
But there was one important promise Blatter gave to his overnight supporters that the new president could not keep: He had promised the World Cup 2006 to Africa. The decision of the FIFA Executive Board was to be made in July 2000, and now Blatter had acquired his first big problem in office.
Africa was counting on him. Indeed, there were a lot of good reasons to give the World Cup to Africa. The continent had never had such a big sporting event. No doubt, the world of football could organise a World Cup in South Africa, because there is enough money in the business to use for developing the infrastructure. But one problem is that officals of the world sport governing bodies - FIFA and IOC - are not really interested in this kind of family aid. They prefer to keep the money from their rich sponsors in their rich countries. And federations, of course.
We all know who the winner was. But it is an error to think that the german victory was only the result of the Franz-Beckenbauer-campaign. It was much more a personal defeat for Blatter and a victory for the Germany, Incorporated.
It was a defeat for Blatter because all 8 Europeans on the Executive Board voted en bloc for the first time in many years. After Johansson's loss in Paris in 1998 they could not risk another disaster. They had to stand together. And they did.
Despite these 8 votes there was still a deficit of 5 votes. As you know, there are 24 votes in all, but a tie of 12:12 would have left the matter in the hands of the deciding vote of FIFA president Blatter, a supporter of South Africa. So Germany desperately needed 5 more votes.
They only got 4. But because New Zealand's Charles Dempsey abstained from the election rather than vote for South Africa it was enough to succeed. 12:11, one abstention.
Now lets look on these 4 new supporters for Germany. It was an entirely Asian bloc. These officals came from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and South Korea.
And now let's take a look at what some of the biggest German companies, some of them bidding sponsors, were doing behind the curtains: DaimlerChrysler, Bayer, BASF and Siemens announced investments and joint ventures in Thailand and South Korea worth around 2 billion US$. All these announcements were made during the last 10 days before the FIFA decision. And 8 days before, the Federal Security Council of Germany decided in a strictly confidential meeting to deliver 1200 anti-tank grenade launchers to Saudi Arabia.
We do not claim that these companies and the government conspired to buy the World Cup 2006. But we do think this was amazingly good timing by german industry. These were precisely those countries that voted for Germany on the 6th of July. South Africas economy could not afford any billion dollar weapons. We think this was the key issue of the election.
But we also think that South Africa did not go far enough after their defeat to clear up all the things that happened. Lets come back to Charles Dempsey's curious behavior: Why did they not take legal measures against an election which had ultimately been determined by the inexplicable abstention of one delegate? Dempsey has said he decided not to vote because he had been put under intolerable pressure by supporters of the competing bids, including attempts to bribe him.
But this can not be accepted as an accurate account of these events. Dempsey was not a private person in Zurich. He had to deliver the vote of his Oceanic confederation to South Africa. And this would have changed the result.
The problems are always the same, and not only in FIFA:
•There is still a huge deficit of democracy and transparency.
•There are no independent controlling bodies.
•The members of the so-called families never call for civil judges, because they fear investigations and inquiries.
•The officals continue to look out for themselves: Since Blatter became president, every member of the Executive Board now gets 50.000 US$ dollars per year.
•The TV and marketing companies, winners and loosers of every so-called bidding game, are looking forward to the next auction.
•The bidding countries and their political leaders are also looking forward to the next bidding process. Those who want to keep their options open are afraid of going too far in critisising powerful sports bureaucrats. They give them what they are asking for: Tax exemptions, for example.
So we would like to close with the same words Dr. Bengt Saltin used yesterday when he talked about the future of sports and the threat of gene doping:
As long as these people are in power and allowed to operate on their own authority there will always be corruption in the world of football.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 2:03pm On May 27, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 2:17pm On May 27, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 2:30pm On May 27, 2011|
FIFA Politics: Sepp Blatter accuses Mohammed Bin Hammam of bribing Jack Warner
May 25th, 2011 | Author: admin
Update: The FIFA Ethics Committee has opened proceedings against Jack Warner and Mohammed Bin Hammam over possible charges of bribery (official FIFA statement). The committee is due to meet (and most likely choose) on May well 29th, just a couple of days before the June 1 elections date (and funnily enough, on a Sunday, appropriate soon after the Champions League final).
Chuck Blazer, a staunch Jack Warner supporter in the past, had reported Warner and Hammam to the FIFA Ethics committee. There were reports that FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke had asked Bin Hammam to withdraw his candidacy earlier this week, and it seems that when Hammam refused, the FIFA Ethics committee proceeded with this case.
What’s the role of Blazer (and why is Warner, a close Blatter ally, implicated)? You can read the Soccerlens Twitter timeline for a lot more insights, but briefly speaking:
1 theory is that Bin Hammam managed to convince Warner to vote for him (by means of bribes / political favours) and Chuck Blazer has decided to side with Blatter in the hope that he will eventually replace Warner as CONCACAF president (and also get a future World Cup).
The second theory is that Blatter and Warner have played a double-bluff with Hammam, trying to discredit him and hound him out of FIFA. If this is accurate, Warner will be cleared of any wrongdoing and Hammam will be found guilty. Unless…
If Hammam withdraws his candidacy, this matter could be closed and put away for very good.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 2:32pm On May 27, 2011|
Doesn't this sound familiar?
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 2:56pm On May 27, 2011|
FIFA's presidential election
Beautiful game, ugly politics
Pity the republic of football. It has a government much like many another
May 26th 2011
| from the print edition
, IN ZURICH on June 1st a presidential election is due to take place. It is a rare event, the first since 2002, with a mere 208 voters. No incumbent has lost since 1974, and the man in possession is expected to win again. The winner, despite his grand title, will not be a head of state. Yet he will be better known than many who are—and his writ, unlike any of theirs, runs the world over. The presidency in question is that of FIFA, the global governing body of association football; the electors are its members, national associations. Sepp Blatter, a Swiss, has had the job for 13 years and thinks he deserves four more.
On May 25th his only challenger, Mohamed Bin Hammam, a Qatari who was once an ally, faced an unexpected obstacle: allegations of bribery involving him and Jack Warner, a Trinidadian who heads a regional confederation with 35 FIFA members. The claims were made by Chuck Blazer, the American general secretary of Mr Warner’s group, who sits with both men on FIFA’s 24-member executive committee (in effect, its cabinet). FIFA’s ethics committee is due to examine the claims on May 29th. The accused deny wrongdoing.
To some, FIFA’s politics stank even before this. Earlier this month the former chairman of the Football Association, which runs the game in England, told British MPs that four members of the executive committee, which decides where World Cups should be held, had asked for, or hinted at wanting, payment in cash, kind or honour for their votes on the 2018 tournament. (Mr Warner was one of them.) The British press has unearthed other claims regarding votes for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments. Those involved in all this deny doing wrong; and accusations from Britain carried a whiff of bad grace, because England’s bid for 2018 failed miserably. The latest claims, though, come from the heart of FIFA’s political structure.
For good or ill, FIFA has much in common with governments whose territories are marked by customs posts rather than goalposts. Like national governments, sporting bodies provide collective goods for their citizens, notes Stefan Szymanski, an economist at Cass Business School in London. They also raise revenue and redistribute wealth. And they are prone to poor administration and to “rent-seeking”—attempts by interest groups, officials and other well-connected people to use their position to gain influence or wealth.
Start with public goods: in sport, the rules are the most fundamental. Football’s “laws” are overseen by the International Football Association Board (IFAB), on which FIFA has four votes and the national associations of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales have one each, a legacy of the game’s British birth. Six votes are needed for a decision. To many coaches and players, as well as commentators and fans, the IFAB has been too slow to allow modern technology, rather than officials’ eyesight, to decide whether the ball has crossed the goal-line. Many other sports have embraced video and electronic gadgetry at their higher levels.
A sport’s governors are also supposed to crack down on match-fixing. Football has been dogged by scandals in this area. The latest involved gambling rings in Asia and eastern Europe, and matches ranging from the lower reaches of European leagues to friendly internationals. On May 9th Mr Blatter announced a joint effort with Interpol, the global police agency, to stamp out this blight.
In a clearer example of a public good, football’s masters have helped create a global market in talent and entertainment. This reflects a shift in FIFA’s balance of power away from Europe which began in the 1970s, in healthy contrast with Euroheavy bodies like World Bank and the IMF. When Mr Blatter’s predecessor, João Havelange, a Brazilian, ousted Sir Stanley Rous, an Englishman, in 1974 it was partly by promising non-Europeans more places at the World Cup. The 1978 tournament featured only 16 national teams, ten of them from Europe; since 1998 there have been 32 slots, with more for Asia, Africa, and North and Central America or the Caribbean.
This has not stopped European countries winning the past two World Cups. And it has helped Europe’s clubs and national leagues. Teams such as Barcelona and Manchester United, who meet in the European Champions League final in London on May 28th, have fans all over the world. That means more money from television and merchandise. Globalisation has also deepened the pool of talent on which European clubs can draw.
Yet there are costs for clubs in Europe and elsewhere. They must release their players for World Cup and other international matches, from which the stars may return tired or hurt. They may view this as a tax in kind, even though FIFA paid them $40m in all for the use of players in the 2010 World Cup.
FIFA may not raise true taxes, but it finds revenue easier to come by than many national governments do. It has become increasingly adept at exploiting the power of the World Cup to draw a global audience. “France [in 1998] was the last poor World Cup,” said Mr Blatter this week. In 2007-10 FIFA’s revenue was $4.2 billion, up from $2.6 billion in the four years before that. Most of it came from the 2010 World Cup: television rights yielded $2.4 billion and marketing rights $1.1 billion.
Redistribution in FIFA’s fief is called “development” spending, intended mainly to improve facilities and coaching in poor countries, which amounted to $794m in 2007-10. Some of this went into Goal, a programme set up by Mr Blatter that is now overseen by Mr Bin Hammam. The six regional confederations and the national associations also got an extra handout from the World Cup windfall in the form of “extraordinary” payments within FIFA’s Financial Assistance Programme. Finding a little extra money for voters just before an election is rarely a bad idea.
As for poor government, FIFA has been supplying examples for years. Take, as just one, the ditching in 2006 of MasterCard, FIFA’s long-term credit-card partner, for Visa—a decision which drew a scathing rebuke from a New York judge. Andrew Jennings, a British journalist who has long been a thorn in FIFA’s side, aired further claims of pockets lined and sins covered up in a BBC documentary on May 23rd.
Despite all this, FIFA’s electors have not seemed ready for revolution. What effect the allegations against Mr Bin Hammam will have, no one knows. It is also hard to say how much would change should he, despite everything, manage to unseat Mr Blatter. Both men insist that FIFA is not corrupt; Mr Bin Hammam has made much of the need for more “transparency”. Certainly, the world’s most popular game needs a better government than the one it has.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 3:04pm On May 27, 2011|
The not-so-beautiful game
Time to blow the whistle and put the right to host the World Cup on eBay
May 12th 2011 | from the print edition
, WHEN it comes to long, rancorous and pointless rows, few things are in the same league as the world’s favourite sport. (Note to American readers: we speak of the game you call soccer.) Arguments rage for days—decades—after the final whistle. Was the ball over the goal-line? (Note to German readers: maybe not at Wembley in 1966, yes in Bloemfontein in 2010.) Was that sending-off deserved, or a gross miscarriage of justice? Was the referee brilliant, blind or bribed?
Off the field, it’s the same. Five months ago 22 members of FIFA’s executive committee voted to stage the 2018 World Cup in Russia and the 2022 tournament in Qatar. People in England, which had hoped to be host in 2018, are still crying “Fix”.
And not just on the terraces. This week Lord Triesman, an establishment figure who chaired the English bid until he was recorded making allegations about rival bidders’ propriety, gave his version to MPs. He said that the behaviour of four committee members had been “below what would be ethically acceptable”. One allegedly asked for millions of pounds, channelled through himself, for an educational establishment in his home country and giant screens on which earthquake-stricken Haitians could watch the World Cup; the second wanted a knighthood; the third told the English “to come and tell me what you have got for me”; the fourth wanted television rights for a match between his country and England. The MPs also published an (unproven) allegation unearthed by the Sunday Times, a British newspaper, that Qatar had paid two other members large sums for votes. The accused all deny wrongdoing. Sepp Blatter, FIFA’s president, whose long reign has seldom been short of controversy, says he’ll look into it all.
Granted, the English are suffering from a bad case of sour grapes. By any standards, they made a mess of their bid, their football establishment is a disaster and their footballers now dive almost as often as continental ones, though sadly without the theatrical grace. But the world badly needs a more open way of choosing the host of the World Cup.
Already suggestions are coming forward. One is to make votes open rather than secret. Another is to give FIFA’s 208 national associations a vote each—as they will have in a few weeks when Mohamed Bin Hammam (of Qatar, would you believe) challenges Mr Blatter for his job. The Economist has another idea. Auction the thing. And do it publicly.
The far corner
An auction would do two things. First, by making sure all the moolah went to FIFA, it would place committee members (with no votes to sell) above suspicion. Second, it would force bidders to work out how much the competition was worth to them. At least in democracies, that might not be very much, judging by past World Cups.
If oligarchs, sheikhs and other rich fans still want to pay for a party, fine. And if governments wanted to take bread from their people to pay for a football circus, they would at least have to admit how much. As for the location of the auction, where better than eBay, the leading online seller of second-hand goods? Fans around the world could watch agog as the deadline neared and bids rose. Better still, FIFA could flog the rights for reality TV.
Spoilsports will come up with all sorts of objections. Mightn’t this be a tad undignified? Perhaps, but football lost its dignity long ago. Wouldn’t an auction discriminate against poorer countries? Yes, but that is easily fixed by continuing to rotate the competition by continent (so Africa still has its turn). And wouldn’t all the treasure going to FIFA provide scope for corruption as it is disbursed? Once again, transparency is the answer. Publish online all the details of where every penny is spent. It is a little like goal-line technology, Mr Blatter. We know that an honest, eagle-eyed referee like you would never need it, but just in case…
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 3:09pm On May 27, 2011|
Freedom of Information around the world
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 3:28pm On May 27, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 3:29pm On May 27, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 10:59am On May 31, 2011|
From a Jamaican Newspaper:
Jack Warner sings as FIFA corruption scandal widens
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) — Jack Warner fulfilled part of his threat to unleash a "Tsumani" against FIFA.
This followed his suspension from connections to the game, along with former FIFA presidential candidate Mohamed bin Hammam, and two Caribbean Football Union officials over bribery allegations.
WARNER, Mr Blatter made a gift of US$1 million (J$85 million) to CONCACAF to spend as it deems fit
Warner — a FIFA vice-president, the president of the CFU and CONCACAF — claimed Blatter also made overtures to CONCACAF officials.
"I denied the allegations that I made statements at the CFU meeting about gifts being given by Mr bin Hammam," he said.
"I also indicated that at the Miami CONCACAF Congress on May 3, Mr Blatter made a gift of US$1 million (J$85 million) to CONCACAF to spend as it deems fit."
He added: "This annoyed (UEFA) president Michel Platini who was present and he approached secretary general Jerome Valcke complaining that Mr Blatter had no permission from the Finance Committee to make this gift to which Jerome replied that he will find the money for Mr Blatter.
"I also indicated at the CFU meeting held in Trinidad on May 10, which was requested by Mr bin Hammam, FIFA through Mr Blatter organised gifts of laptops and projectors to all members of the Caribbean, and no objections have been made of this to date."
Warner noted that the race to become FIFA president had become quite intense as the June 1 date drew closer, and he felt that it may have been in the best interest of the organisation for bin Hammam to withdraw.
"On May 18, when I realised that the political battle between Blatter and bin Hammam was getting out of hand, I wrote secretary general Valcke telling him, among other things, that the outcome of the elections may cause some fracture in the Arab world, which we can ill afford now, and that I will like to ask bin Hammam to withdraw from the race," said Warner.
He reproduced an excerpt of an email from Valcke about bin Hammam running against Blatter for FIFA president in which the FIFA secretary general suggested that the Qatari had "bought" the 2022 World Cup for his country.
"For MBH (Mohamed bin Hammam), I never understood why he was running," wrote Valcke.
"If really he thought he had a chance or just being an extreme way to express how much he does not like anymore JSB (Joseph Sepp Blatter). Or he thought you can buy FIFA as they bought the WC (World Cup).
"I have a bet since day one, he will withdraw, but on June 1st after his 10-minute speech. By doing so he can say he pushes Blatter to make new commitments and get out under applause."
Warner said despite pleas from Valcke to make public which way CONCACAF would vote, he refused to give in.
Read more: http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/sport/Jack-Warner-sings-as-FIFA-corruption-scandal-widens_8927320#ixzz1NuwX5hXz
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 11:19am On May 31, 2011|
Tuesday, 30 November 2010The Corruption in FIFA - The Jack Warner Story
In the first part of this series, we were introduced to the President of CONCACAF – the Trinidadian Jack Warner. Warner was the man who was involved in substituting a mysterious woman – the wife of the head of the Jamaican Football Federation – into the place of the absent Haitian delegate in the 1996 FIFA Congress.
He is one of Sepp Blatter’s closest friends and allies in football. “A wonderful and loyal friend. He is very competent and I just have to say that Jack is one of the top personalities in the world of football,” is how Blatter would describe the controversial Warner.
However, his popularity does not reach quite such heights in his own backyard. In Trinidad, he is described by many as a dictator, who has built his power at the expense of others and who has used his position within FIFA to serve his own financial goals. He has been called a ‘clown’ and a ‘disgrace’ by Roy Keane, and is deeply unpopular with the Trinidad and Tobago national team players for reasons we shall see later.
When meeting the Queen at Buckingham Palace, he complained to her that British companies were failing to spend their sponsorship money on football in Trinidad and Tobago. He has supported the corrupt former UNC government in the country, and estimates suggest that through his FIFA connections, he has amassed a fortune of almost £20m.
His first role in football came as the general secretary of the Trinidad Football Association. He immediately entrenched his power by setting up numerous organisations filled with his people, who could exercise voting rights should he come under threat from a competitor. He rapidly spotted a chance for further promotion when he ran for the presidency of the Caribbean Football Union, which came with the added prize of a seat on the FIFA Executive Committee.
One of the first instances where Warner came in for criticism over his seemingly insatiable desire to profit from football was back in 1989. Trinidad & Tobago were one result away from their first ever appearance in the World Cup. They needed only a point against the mighty Americans in Port of Spain to reach the global showpiece.
Jack Warner announced that extra tickets would be printed for the game and that alcohol restrictions within the ground would be lifted. The capacity of the stadium was 28,500. The local paper accused Warner of printing over 45,000 tickets.
Due to the crush of people, the ground was opened early. People crowded into the ground, filling every seat and aisle, whilst the bars served a roaring trade. Jack Warner relaxed in the VIP lounge with his pre-match drink, oblivious to the chaos outside.
Thousands of angry fans, who had spent their money on tickets to Trinidad’s biggest match in living memory, were stuck outside, unable to get into the ground. Opinion turned against Warner, who became the target of the crowd’s anger. The minibus carrying the Trinidad players was unable to get through the crowd, and in the end, the players had to be carried over the heads of the masses and into the stadium.
In the days following the chaos, Jack Warner had to backtrack on his original report to FIFA where he claimed that he had sold 43k tickets for the match. In a press briefing later, he claimed that they had only sold the 28,500 tickets that the stadium could cope with, and the turnstile figures of 34,834 were clearly wrong.
Soon, the government became involved, appointing an independent commission to look into the events. The words of the head of the commission speak strongly about Warner:
“Did Warner believe he was God or merely think he was running the country?”
Following the incident, Jack Warner resigned as head of the country’s football association, but had ambitions of a far greater nature. He was in negotiations with Chuck Blazer, commissioner of the American Soccer League, to challenge for the presidency of CONCACAF and become one of the most powerful men in world football.
He eventually won the election with 16 votes compared with 10 against him. Despite the fact that the other candidates had all withdrawn, he was still only able to get just over 60% of the vote.
We now fast forward twelve years to 2001. Jack Warner had managed to manipulate FIFA into awarding the U17 World Cup to Trinidad & Tobago. He named himself chairman of the tournament organising committee, an appointment that was approved by FIFA’s six-man finance committee (of which Jack Warner was a senior member) and the executive committee (of which Jack Warner was a vice-president). So, in other words, he appointed and then approved himself to organise a tournament that he had awarded to his home country.
Jack Warner with his son, Daryan, who conveniently won many of the contracts for the U17 World Cup controlled by his father
Five new stadia were built by companies linked to associates of Jack Warner. When technical staff from the broadcasting companies visited the new stadia, they discovered that roof beams and cables would obstruct the cameras views of the pitch. When they tried to question Warner and FIFA over this, they were sidelined.
All the food and beverage contracts for the new stadia were awarded to a local restaurant business. Seems legitimate at first glances. However, if we look at the owner of the local business, we find the name Daryan Warner. Jack Warner awarded these lucrative contracts to his son.
The fifteen teams that were travelling in to compete in the tournament needed a travel agency to arrange their flights and accommodation. On the recommendation of Warner, Simpaul’s Travel service, a family-owned travel agency, was awarded the deal. And which family was it owned by? You guessed it, the Warner family.
That is not all. FIFA were experimenting with introducing kiosks in hotel lobbies to enable fans to access instant reports and breaking news. The contract was with a company called Semtor, and with the help of Blatter, Warner forced through the deal worth around US$2m. The catch? The project manager for Semtor was none other than Daryan Warner, who picked up a check for US$60k as ‘management liaison between all web initiative consultants.’
We now head forward in time again to late 2005. Trinidad & Tobago have just qualified for the World Cup for the first time after Dennis Lawrence’s header beat Bahrain to send them to Germany. The only way that Trinidadians can get tickets for their team’s first round matches? Simpaul Travel Services. The company owned by Jack Warner.
For a hefty fee of £2,730.53, fans would get tickets for the three group stage games and shared accommodation. According to a Trinidad journalist, Simpaul Travel were making a profit of over £1,700 on each package sold. Indeed, the Independent newspaper in England suggested that Warner could make a profit of over £10m on his country’s ticket allocation.
A privately appointed committee was responsible for handling the sponsorship and merchandising for the team. Following a request from a London-based business, they requested a fee of US$80k, plus 5% of gross sales of the proposed merchandise. And who could the representative of this mysterious private committee be? Daryll Warner – another of Jack’s sons. How convenient.
Indeed, FIFA regulations even stated that packaging tickets with other services is not permitted. So, Warner’s own company was completely ignoring FIFA’s own rules, whilst he was accused selling FIFA tickets for his own personal profit.
The Trinidad & Tobago team that made it to the World Cup in 2006 - they still haven't received their payments from that tournament
And what of the players? They had been promised 50% of the commercial profit revenues during their qualifying matches and their World Cup matches in Germany. Warner’s own accountant drew up the accounts, but had mysteriously lost the copies of the hotel bills amongst others. No problem. They simply estimated the cost (higher of course), and moved on. He also decided that a third of the sponsorship money was really intended for the 2010 World Cup campaign, thus reducing the total pot by over £360k.
Overall, in excess of TT$173m (£17.4m) flowed into the coffers of the Trinidad & Tobago accounts from that campaign, with 50% of the revenues going to the players involved. So, how much did each player receive? A whopping £492.86. Shaka Hislop wrote to Warner complaining that “you have continually proven yourself heavily biased and opinionated in this matter.” Each player should have received in the region of £260k each. Significantly higher than the almost £500 they were actually offered.
A judgement in the courts concerning that case is expected in the coming hours or days, but it begs the question as to what happened to all the money that seems to have disappeared. Unseen costs? Lost in transit? Or possibly lining the pockets of various officials?
So while Jack Warner has controlled Caribbean football and CONCACAF with his almost dictator-like reign, he and his sons and friends have all been doing very nicely out of the money that should have been invested in football in Trinidad and the local fans. Is this really the type of man that we want in a senior position of power in the beautiful game?
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 12:00pm On May 31, 2011|
Corruption in FIFA - Part 1
The issue of corruption within FIFA has become a hot topic in recent months, following the Sunday Times sting operation that caught out two members of the executive committee and the Panorama programme by Andrew Jennings that accused a further three members of accepting bribes from ISL back in the nineties. Sepp Blatter and FIFA have resisted calls for a thorough investigation for years, but the pressure on them is becoming almost too much to resist.
The FIFA executive committee is the main decision-making of the organisation and, amongst other things, is responsible for deciding the hosts of the World Cup. It consists of the President of FIFA, eight vice-presidents and a further fifteen members, appointed by the various confederations and associations.
Sepp Blatter, President of FIFA
Sepp Blatter is the President of FIFA, and has been since 1998 when he succeeded former President and mentor, Joao Havelange, who was named honorary life President. The vice-presidents include senior vice-president, Julio Grondona, who is head of the Argentine Football Federation, the head of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Issa Hayatou, Jack Warner, the President of the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) and Reynaud Temarii, the President of the Oceania Football Confederation amongst others.
Amongst the other members of the committee, we find the likes of Ricardo Teixeira, the President of the Brazilian Football Confederation, Nicolas Leoz, the President of the South American Football Federation (CONMEBOL), Mohamed Bin Hammam, the President of the Asian Football Confederation and Nigerian Amos Adamu.
There are a number of other characters from outside of the executive committee that play a part in the story. We have former head of marketing at FIFA and current General Secretary, Jerome Valcke. Captain Horace Burrell, the President of the Jamaican Football Association, and Chet Greene, the former General Secretary of the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association are two more individuals that will play a prominent part. One final character that will appear on several occasions in a slightly different role is Jean-Marie Kyss, the head of the Haitian Football Association.
The most recent scandal was that involving the Sunday Times investigation. Undercover reporters recorded footage of senior FIFA members seemingly accepting money in exchange for their vote in the bidding for the World Cup. Vice-president, Reynaud Temarii, and executive committee member, Amos Adamu, were both subsequently investigated by FIFA’s ethics committee. Adamu was fined £6,341 and suspended from all football activities for three years, while Reynaud Temarii was fined £3,170 and suspended for one year for their parts in the scandal.
Four other former members of the executive committee was also indicted in the investigation. Botswana’s Ismael Bhamjee was banned from football for four years, Mali’s Amadou Diakite and Tonga’s Ahongalu Fusimalohi were banned for three years and Tunisia’s Slim Aloulou was banned for two years.
For virtually the first time, allegations of corruption had been investigated properly and punishments handed out. The public pressure from the allegations had been too great for FIFA to resist. However, this is by no means the first time that supposed incidents of corruption have taken place within the hallowed halls of FIFA.
The first short story we shall look at involves a predominantly Caribbean cast. In July 1996, FIFA were meeting in Zurich for their bi-annual conference with a particularly important item on the agenda – a proposal to increase the size of the executive committee. Jack Warner was hoping to push through the reform as he hoped it would give him and his allies greater power and seats on the committee.
Dr Jean-Marie Kyss was the head of the Haitian Football Association. His invitation to the event was delayed in the post and his federation was short of funds, so he informed CONCACAF that he would not be attending the conference.
FIFA’s head of credentials then received a call informing them that Dr Kyss had dropped out a while ago and that Haiti had sent a replacement by the name of Vincy Jalal. The new Haitian delegate took their seat next to Grenada’s representative, Colin Klass, and near to Jamaica’s Horace Burrell. This all seems relatively straight-forward.
Until we look a little more closely as to the identity of Haiti’s new delegate. Vincy Jalal was actually the wife of Captain Horace Burrell. Despite being surrounded by CONCACAF delegates who must have known the identity of Dr Kyss and some of whom who must have known Ms Jalal, no objections were raised by Jack Warner’s loyal representatives. When the roll call was carried out, Ms Jalal used the only word she knew in French, the language of Haiti, to respond – ‘Oui.’ Fortunately for her, she did not need anything further. She submitted her vote under Haiti’s name as she was instructed to by her husband, Burrell.
Captain Horace Burell with Sepp Blatter
Shockingly, this was not the only time that Jack Warner and his pals inserted an imposter in the place of Dr Kyss. Two years after Vincy Jalal had taken his place, a similar incident occurred. At the 1998 Congress, Dr Kyss tried to fly to Paris to take part in the vote to elect the President of FIFA. The two candidates were former General Secretary, Sepp Blatter, and Lennart Johansson.
However, Dr Kyss was unpopular with the Haitian government, having stood up against them to protect football in the country. As he arrived at the airport to fly to Paris, representatives from the Secretary of Sport in Haiti appeared informing him that he was banned from leaving the country. He contacted CONCACAF President, Jack Warner, and explained that he would not be there. He explained that he wanted Haiti’s empty seat at the Congress to symbolise the interference of the government in sport in Haiti.
The 1998 Presidential elections between Blatter and Johansson were expected to be very close. Each representative voted one-by-one, all the way down to country number 191, Zimbabwe, represented by Leo Mugabe. Therefore, with Haiti’s absence, there should be a total of 190 votes to be counted. When the first round results were announced, Sepp Blatter had beaten Lennart Johansson by 111 votes to 80. A total of 191 votes were cast. So what happened to the empty seat that was meant to be left for Haiti?
When Haiti’s name had been called out in the roll call, a response of a ‘present’ was heard in unmistakably Caribbean-accented English. No matter that they speak French in Haiti, not English. So who was taking the place of Dr Kyss?
The man was Neville Ferguson, a personal assistant to Jack Warner and General Secretary of the Caribbean Football Union. Again, not a single Caribbean delegate raised any comment about how the white, greying, spectacle-wearing Dr Kyss had seemingly morphed into a black man for the conference.
Dr Kyss, whose seat was twice taken by imposters arranged by Jack Warner and Horace Burrell
Dr Kyss did not find out that his empty seat protest had not occurred until 2002 – four years later. He was shocked to find out what had really happened, and through Lennart Johansson, requested FIFA set up an enquiry to look into what happened. In February 2003, Sepp Blatter announced that there would indeed be an enquiry into the events.
It was finally revealed in 2005 that there had been a secret hearing way back in June 2003 that FIFA had tried to keep secret. It found that Neville Ferguson received only a reprimand and would have to share in covering the costs of the proceedings with FIFA. It begs the question, if Ferguson was guilty as FIFA supposedly found, why should FIFA help cover the costs of the inquiry?
Bizarrely, FIFA also decided that Dr Kyss had breached article 12 of the FIFA statute. Article 12 regards members’ rights and states:
Members have the following rights:
a) To take part in the Congress;
b) To draw up proposals for inclusion in the agenda of the Congress;
c) To nominate candidates for the FIFA Presidency;
d) To take part in competitions organised by FIFA;
e) To take part in FIFA’s assistance and development programmes;
f) To exercise all other rights arising from these Statutes and other regulations
Quite which of these parts Dr Kyss supposedly breached when he was illegally prevented from leaving Haiti by a corrupt government is questionable. However, if he had still been in his position as Haiti’s delegate at the time of the inquiry, FIFA would have imposed punishments on him.
So, how have the men who appear to have been involved in the vote rigging scandal fared since the true version of events were made public?
Neville Ferguson continued as an official of various football organisations in the Caribbean under the control of Jack Warner, as well as earning fees as an international match commissioner. Captain Horace Burrell was awarded the FIFA Order of Merit in 2000, in 2002 he was made a member of the disciplinary commission overseeing the 2002 World Cup, and in 2004 he was given a role travelling the world giving advice to various football officials.
And Jack Warner remains one of the most powerful men in FIFA in his role as CONCACAF President and vice-president of the executive committee. However, we shall see more of Warner in the upcoming parts of this collection of articles.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 5:18pm On May 31, 2011|
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by AjanleKoko: 12:30pm On Jun 01, 2011|
Ironically, FIFA's corruption has actually kept the game together all these years.
That probably sounds outrageous, I know. But the tight closed control, the rules of the game, the infallibility of the match officials. They have all helped to keep the game's status intact.
Though they are finally conceding, but I think the old barons will still win. The English just want to get their hands on the game and reshape it to their ideals.
|Re: The Nigerian Political Class And Their Foreign Counterparts by johnie: 12:53pm On Jun 01, 2011|
I agree with you.
After these "elections", the barons need to do a lot of soul searching and make some real changes.
I think that has actually begun. I hear that the full FIFA will now select future world cup hosts rather than the executive committee.
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