BBC’s Panorama program scheduled to air tonight has brought a much need light to the haven of corruption known as FIFA. This cancer has tainted the race to find the winning hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.
The recent suspension of two officials—Amos Adamu and Reynald Temarii—was just a smoke-screen gesture to ward off further pressure and scrutiny.
However, the stench goes further up FIFA’s hierarchy. At least three vice presidents, according to findings related to the BBC program, who represent their respective continents, have at various times received bribes through well-finessed contract packages and kick-backs (no pun intended).
None of the fingered three would respond to questions or made any attempts to clear the air on their nefarious dealings.
ISL/ISMM, a former marketing agency that served FIFA, folded in 2001 following allegations of fraud and embezzlement among that company’s key officials and FIFA’s greedy elite. Some estimate that over a $100 million was involved in these shady activities.
In a revealing expose, an anti-corruption body founded a Danish-based group—Play the Game—put out a statement that a former FIFA secretary general Michel Zen-Ruffinen, had worked as a lobbyist to give the US bid vital data on the corruption thresholds of its executive committee members.
In 2002, Joseph Blatter was accused of abusing his power, corruption and poor management by Zen-Ruffinen as he left FIFA.
In the light of these revelations, it is unfortunate that the beautiful game has some of the ugliest administrators at its helm. More is the pity!