The African football boss
By Anye Nde Nsoh, kick442.com
Recently reinstated Confederation of African Football (CAF) president, Ahmad Ahmad arrived in Cameroon to preside over the African Nations Championship (CHAN) 2020 final between Mali and Morocco to be played on Sunday at Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaounde.
He was met at the airport on Friday by CAF vice-president, Constant Omari; FECAFOOT’s president Prince Seidou Mbombo Njoya and other dignitaries.
Ahmad was recently reinstated as CAF president by Court of Arbitration for Sports after claims of mismanagement and the 61-year-old Malagasy will occupy his position until an appeal hearing on a yet to be announced date.
The activities of CHAN 2020 has been in the hands of the vice-president Omari.
Ahmad had been banned for five years and handed a $200,000 fine by world governing body FIFA in November for contravening the governing body’s code of ethics.
He had been accused of disloyalty, offering and accepting gifts, abuse of office and misappropriation of funds. However, the Malagasy administrator denied the allegations and appealed the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
CAS made the preliminary ruling January 29, restoring the administrator back to his post, and a final decision will be made before the CAF presidential elections on March 12.
“Due to a risk of irreparable harm for Mr Ahmad if the disciplinary sanction is maintained during the period prior to the CAF elections, the CAS panel has upheld the request to temporarily stay the effects of the [FIFA ban],” CAS had said in a statement.
The court, however, rejected a request from Ahmad to prevent the world football governing body from disallowing him from participating in the CAF elections.
“The arbitral Panel has rejected the request for provisional measures filed by Mr Ahmad seeking that an order be imposed preventing FIFA from taking any decision aimed at preventing Mr Ahmad from participating in, or aimed at making it difficult for him to participate in the election for the CAF presidency scheduled for 12 March 2021.”
Jacques Anouma [Cote d’Ivoire], Patrice Motsepe [South Africa], Augustin Senghor [Senegal] and Ahmed Yahya [Mauritania] have been cleared to contest for the elections, although the reprieve for Ahmad opens the door for the current timescale for the voting process to be altered.
Ahmad secured a landmark victory in the 2017 elections in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to emerge as the CAF president, defeating Issa Hayatou, who had been in the position since 1988.
The Malagasy has overseen the organisation of a number of competitions since becoming the president including the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
Meanwhile, after their brilliant victory against Cameroon in the CHAN semifinal, Morocco became the first country to qualify for two consecutive final matches of the competition.
Morocco hosted and won the CHAN in 2018 when they defeated Nigeria in the final to win their first trophy in the competition.
In the ongoing edition, Morocco have been able to see off all opponents are now have just Mali on their way to win back-to-back finals.
Victory for the Atlas Lions will take them join top with the DR Congo as most successful teams to win the competition. The DR Congo has won the competition on two different occasions.