Safa to discuss Sexwale’s Fifa strategy

PHOTO: sourced  Fifa presidential candidate, Tokyo Sexwale.
PHOTO: sourced Fifa presidential candidate, Tokyo Sexwale.

FIFA presidential candidate Tokyo Sexwale has been called to appear before the South African Football Association (Safa) to answer questions about a l acklustre election campaign, Safa said on Monday.

Plans for him to meet the association’s leadership on Monday were cancelled however, because Sexwale is overseas, Safa spokesperson Dominic Chimhavi told Reuters. Safa wants him to explain his campaign tactics and progress after backing his bid for the presidency and helping him obtain the five nominations he needed to stand in the February 26 ballot to replace Sepp Blatter.

The billionaire businessman, who is not a formal Safa member, has made little impact, failing to get an endorsement from the Confederation of African Football despite being the only African in the five-man race.

This contrasts with Asian support for their president Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain and Uefa’s backing of the Swiss Gianni Infantino.

“The Nec [national executive committee], which is the highest decision-making body of the association, made a resolution at its meeting at the weekend that they want to engage with him to find out how his campaign is going and what he thinks his chances are,” Chimhavi said on Monday. “There were concerns about his low-profile campaign and they want him to come and explain himself.”

The 62-year-old Sexwale is in Qatar before going to Brussels tomorrow to attend a meeting of the New Fifa Now pressure group.

Sexwale is a former political prisoner jailed alongside Nelson Mandela and served as Premier of Gauteng, South Africa’s economic heartland, and later as a cabinet minister in South Africa. He also proved successful in mining and other businesses.

His association with Mandela has failed to earn him credibility with Fifa member associations, however, and his election manifesto, which offered few ideas on how to change the corruption-haunted Fifa, did him no favours either.

Its main point was an offer to lift a ban on sponsorship appearing on national team shirts to allow associations to increase revenue. Sexwale, invited to serve on Fifa’s anti-racism and anti-discrimination committee by Blatter, was a member of South Africa’s 2010 World Cup organising committee.

Earlier this month he expressed his support for the now banned Fifa president. “I feel very sorry for [Blatter]. I don’t say he was a friend but he is a friend … Blatter’s work is a monument that stands for itself,” Sexwale told reporters.

Frenchman Jerome Champagne and Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan are the other Fifa presidential candidates.

- Reuters.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
Voting Booth
As South Africa faces down the third Covid-19 wave, how are you keeping your family safe ?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Staying at home, isolating and being careful
15% - 70 votes
Sanitising and wearing masks when we go out
73% - 351 votes
Going on as usual, we're not afraid of the virus
12% - 60 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo