“CAMPAIGN FOR A NEW FIFA NOW!”
Noseweek readers have known for years how endemically corrupt FIFA, football’s world governing body really is (noses 91; 127; 128). Now, since all attempts at reform have failed, disenchanted fans, players, senior managers and sponsors are to hold a Summit in Brussels later this month to discuss how to replace FIFA with an entirely new structure.
Football players and fans everywhere have been invited to join a peoples' campaign for a new FIFA.
The campaign will kick-off at the Summit to be held at the European Parliament in Brussels on January 21st. It will be attended by FIFA Presidential candidate, Jerome Champagne; the man who led the technical inspection team for the 2018/2022 World Cup Bids, Harold Mayne-Nicholls; the former Chairman of the England Bid and the English FA, Lord David Triesman, as well as other high profile football personalities.
"People have had enough," said British MP, Damian Collins, who has been one of the most vocal critics of FIFA's management and governance practices.
"I speak to amateur and professional players, fans, and mums and dads whose children play and love the game. It has reached the stage where FIFA is a laughing stock.
"We all love the game. But we all detest how it's run."
Collins said the Brussels Summit is the first vital step in making a new FIFA a reality.
It's also the first of its kind where politicians, players, fans and corporations will come together in a campaign for change.
Champagne, Mayne-Nicholls and Triesman will be joined by co-hosts, European MPs Ivo Belet of Belgium and Emma McClarkin of England, as well as British MPs Gerry Sutcliffe, John Leech and Collins. Other attendees include the Chairman of SKINS, Jaimie Fuller, and Bonita Mersiades who is a former senior executive of the Australian FA and the Australian World Cup bid.
Collins says the Brussels Summit will focus on how change can happen.
"We don't intend to talk about what is wrong with FIFA, as we all know what's wrong.
"The experience since the Presidential election in 2011 - when we were promised things would change - shows that FIFA is incapable of reforming itself. But we also know that FIFA's problems go much further back than that."
Collins says that while recent events concerning the Garcia report into the conduct of the 2018/2022 World Cup Bids was the final motivation needed for he and other MPs to take action, the report and its publication is not a 'first order' issue.
"Like the decisions surrounding Russia and Qatar, the farce surrounding the Garcia report is symptomatic of a governing body where democracy, transparency and accountability were long ago forsaken in place of corruption, mismanagement and self-interest."
He said that the Brussels Summit will focus on what mechanisms can be employed to make real change happen.
"This is not about shifting deck chairs on the Executive Committee of FIFA," Collins said.
"It is real change for a new style of organisation that is befitting of FIFA's position overseeing the biggest sport in the world.
"We want to see football governed by people who make decisions and take action in a transparent manner, and who are held accountable in the best interests of the sport and civil society."
Collins urged everyone wishing to support the campaign for a New FIFA Now to sign the petition at www.newfifanow.org
Copyright © 2021 www.noseweek.co.za