CAF Elections: Nigeria loses, Hayatou returns

Nigeria’s attempt to enter the center of African football politics has suffered a big blow following the defeat of the President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Aminu Maigari in the CAF Executive committee elections. It was the West Zone B election.

At the polls held in the Moroccan city of Marrakech, Maigari was roundly beaten by Republic of Benin’s  Moucharafou Anjorin in the run-off ballot into the all-powerful Executive Committee. According to reports from Morocco, Maigari was able to garner 19 votes as against  Anjorin’s 35 votes, a result that marked an end to  his bid to  fill the position previously occupied by deposed FIFA Exco member, Amos Adamu, who lost his place on the body following bribery allegations.

But in a bizarre twist to the defeat, the Nigerian camp, who were at the venue of the election, were reported to have told Osasu Obayiuwana’s twitter account that Maigari would have won if he had the support of Adamu who is said to still command respect before CAF members. According to the account, “imagine losing to Moucharafou. This is not WAFU’s division rather Dr Amos Adamu’s factor. People fail to realise that CAF is like a cult”, said one of them. “It’s a shame they want to blame their failure on Adamu; they knew they lacked character,”another football official said in Lagos. Also, on the losing side yesterday, South Africa’s  Danny Jordaan lost out on a seat in the CAF exco, to Ahmad of Madagascar, who polled 27 votes as against Jordaan’s 21. 27 was enough because only 50 countries voted.

Also making a return to the Exco, was Seychelles’ Suketu Patel, who polled 33 votes out of a possible 54. After a FIFA ban, Amadou Diakite returned to the CAF Exco, with 35 votes out of a possible 54. He was amongst those banned alongside Adamu about two years ago. But like a cat with nine lives, the Malian has entered the fray of CAF politics again and he will be hoping to have a clean record this time around.

Cameroonian Issa Hayatou was re-elected unopposed as Confederation of African Football (CAF) president for a final four-year term in office. The 66-year-old, who was voted into power in 1988, has already said this seventh term will be his final period as head of the organization. Hayatou, who was applauded by delegates at the CAF congress in Marrakech, also received a special certificate from Fifa to commemorate his silver jubilee on the executive committee.



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