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Sexwale advised to step down from FIFA race

Tokyo Sexwale
Tokyo Sexwale

Cape Town - FIFA presidential hopeful Tokyo Sexwale has been asked to withdraw from the campaign, according to reports.

According to Times Live, the South African Football Association (SAFA) told the 62-year-old that he does not have the support of the association.

However, in an about-turn, to save Sexwale from an embarrassing exit from the race, he was allowed to stay on as a candidate when SAFA decided to leave his fate in the hands of the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

Sexwale is one of five names (Bahraini Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, Jordanian Prince Ali Al Hussein, Swiss Gianni Infantino and Frenchman Jerome Champagne) vying for the most prestigious position in football administration.

It is reported that Sexwale was told that Europe is set to back Infantino and that he "does not have the support of Africa".

CAF officials will meet in Kigali, Rwanda, on Friday to decide who they will back.

"I know you wanted a yes or a no, but the first port of call is that this is a matter that should be discussed by CAF," said SAFA president Danny Jordaan after meeting with Sexwale.

"We will be present when CAF announce their decision. Whoever they endorse will have a significant advantage in this race."

SAFA released a statement in the week saying that the meeting was merely to find out how his campaign has been going and receive further updates on his plans leading up to the February 26 decision, the day the new FIFA president will be announced. 

"SAFA therefore reiterates its position that the meeting with Mr Sexwale was called merely to receive an update on the next steps in his campaign and to determine what further engagement he requires from the Association and not to convey a decision of the NEC on the viability or otherwise of Mr Sexwale's candidacy, as some media reports indicate," said SAFA CEO Dennis Mumble.

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