FIFA needs to bring its member
associations into line as well as cleaning up its own act, the
man called in to head its new independent watchdog said on
Football's governing body has been plagued by allegations of
corruption involving officials elected from their own regions
over the last 18 months.
Mark Pieth, a professor in criminal law working for the
independent Basel Institute of Governance, said FIFA could not
be directly answerable for everything that went on in its member
But he reckoned FIFA could use its development programmes as
a financial carrot to bring federations into line.
"FIFA doesn't have the authority to tell them that 'you need
to do this or that', but it distributes money and can motivate
people saying 'you will get your money because you are following
the rules,'" he said.
"Federations can't just take money like that, you have to
account for it," he told Reuters after presenting a report
outlining measures that FIFA should take to fight corruption and
Pieth added that FIFA should also ensure its own rules were
enforced around the world such as in cases where African teams
were suspected of fielding foreign-players who were not
qualified to play for them.
"Many of these things seem to be a case of not following
their own rules," he said.
However, he added it was impossible to completely stamp out
corruption in a multinational organisation.
"It's like the United Nations, you have to live with the
world you have," he said.
His report said that $794 million were spent on development
programmes by FIFA such as the so-called Goal and "Win in"
"The challenge is that FIFA has a responsibility for the
proper use of these funds," said the report.
"Democracy on the level of a global governing body does not
necessarily imply democracy at grass roots level in the
individual member associations.
"One of the key challenges will be what influence FIFA can
have in fostering good governance and democracy also in its
Recommended measures would include avoiding cash payments,
only allow payments to bank accounts which are defined in formal
agreements and ban payments to banks in a third country or to
"It is fundamental that - in particular in corruption-prone
areas of the world - achievers in sports develop into role
models as an alternative to corrupt politicians and
businessmen," said the report.
"For that reason, it is crucial to keep the world of sports
and sports officials clean."
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