FIFA and CAF resolve Ethiopian soccer sqabble

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The world soccer governing body, FIFA, and the Confederation of African Football (CAF) have moved to stop the management crisis dogging the Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF), according to a joint statement from the two bodies.

To set the ball rolling, the federations said they had decided to establish a road-map geared towards normalising the situation at EFF “and bring back unity in the Ethiopian football community.”

FIFA said after hearing the parties embroiled in a leadership wrangle in Zurich, Switzerland, Friday, it together with CAF did not recognise decisions taken by one of the factions during the “so called general assemblies the faction convened in Addis Ababa on 29 January, 2008”.

The Zurich meeting was chaired by CAF President Issa Hayatou and FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke.

The soccer governing bodies threw their weight behind one Dr. Ashebir and the remaining members of the EFF executive committee, saying they were the only ones duly recognised by FIFA and CAF as the legitimate leaders of the Ethiopian federation.

Stamping their authority, they convoked an EFF Extraordinary General Assembly to take place in Addis Ababa 29 March 2008.

The agenda of the assembly will be one item – “motion of dismissal” of the current executive committee, according to the EFF statutes. “The statutes stipulate that this motion, to be approved, has to be voted by secret ballot and supported by 2/3 of the valid votes cast by the voting official delegates,” said the statement.

If the above-mentioned motion for dismissal is supported, an Elective Extraordinary General Assembly will be convoked by the governing bodies in Addis Ababa 10 May 2008 to elect the new EFF executive committee, the statement said. “The candidates will have ten days, until 10 April 2008, to submit to the EFF general secretariat, CAF and FIFA their declaration of candidacy and their recommendations according to the EFF statutes,” it added.

It said if the above-mentioned motion for dismissal was not supported, the current EFF leadership would finish its regular mandate of four years, following the elections of July 2005. “FIFA and CAF will send a joint delegation to the two General Assemblies to control procedures as well as members’ accreditations, with all logistical aspects organised by the EFF General Secretariat, and will re-affirm that this road-map is guided by the rules and procedures of the EFF statutes as approved by FIFA and CAF,” the statement said.

Re-emphasising the legality of the move, the governing bodies called upon the “wisdom of all the members of the Ethiopian football community to respect this decision as stipulated in the Article 13.1.a and d of the FIFA Statutes.”

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