15.5 C
Doha
Friday, February 26, 2021

FIFA probe into Qatar 2022 bid delayed; details may not be made public

-

2014 World Cup

An ethics committee tasked with investigating Qatar and Russia’s World Cup bids will not forward its findings until September – some two months behind schedule – FIFA has confirmed.

For the past 18 months, the investigatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee, led by US attorney Michael Garcia, has been looking into corruption claims regarding the 2018 and 2022 tournament bids.

Among the most recent charges is that Qatar bribed officials to win votes, according to the UK’s Sunday Times newspaper, which said it had access to “millions of documents” supporting these claims.

Last month, Garcia said he had already reviewed many of those documents during his probe, and that he expected his report to be submitted to the adjudicatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee around the middle of this month.

It is not clear why there is a delay in the process, and analysts are now saying it’s possible the ethics report will not be publicly released.

FIFA statement

In a statement sent to Doha News, FIFA said: “We expect to deliver our report to the adjudicatory chamber by the first week of September 2014.”

It declined to give a specific timeline of what would happen after the report was submitted, but Garcia said in an interview with a German newspaper this week that FIFA may not choose to act on the findings until late May of next year.

Die Welt Am Sonntag reports that possible sanctions against Qatar or Russia would likely be decided at FIFA’s annual congress in Zurich. It continues, as translated into English:

“Even if (Garcia) should come up with pioneering discoveries – a guarantee that the Qatar World Cup may not align, it would not. Neither Garcia nor the German judge (and adjudicatory chamber chair Hans-Joachim) Eckert can take such a decision.

This can only be the Fifa Congress, which meets once a year and in which each national association has one vote. In May 2015, Zurich, as it is planned, it is so far.”

Report may not be public

Throughout the investigation process, questions have been raised about FIFA’s transparency. This might be because, according to FIFA’s Code of Conduct, much of the process must remain confidential.

The process works like this: the investigatory chamber, which Garcia heads, compiles a report examining allegations and makes recommendations.

This findings are then handed to the adjudicatory chamber, which is led by Eckert. This chamber will review the report behind closed doors, then liaise with the involved parties (including Qatar and Russia) before making a final ruling.

FIFA HQ

Article 36 of the code states that all “facts of the case, contents of the investigations and deliberations and decisions” should remain confidential.

It added there is no obligation for the details of the report to be publicly revealed: “Only the final decisions already notified to the addressees may be made public.”

Additionally, under article 78 of the code, there is no obligation for the ethics committee to reveal the grounds for any decision it has made, unless one of the parties requests it.

The findings has been eagerly awaited since German FIFA executive committee member Theo Zwanziger announced in February that the report would be finished by the latter half of this year.

Speaking at a European Parliament session on Qatar’s human rights’ record, Zwanziger’s remarks are reported to have taken Qatar by surprise.

Sponsors’ concerns

In the past several months, pressure on FIFA has been increasing to act on the corruption allegations, with key sponsors including Adidas, Sony, Visa and Coca-Cola taking the unusual step of publicly expressing concern.

Sepp Blatter

Last month, Sepp Blatter, president of the world’s football governing body, spoke out against Qatar’s critics, saying, “Sadly there’s a great deal of discrimination and racism.”

Throughout the process, Qatar has denied all allegations of wrongdoing.

One of the concerns is that the findings could cause Qatar to stripped of its rights to host the World Cup.

However, speaking on Al Jazeera last week, the Supreme Committee of Delivery & Legacy’s communications director Nasser Al-Khater maintained that Qatar had done nothing wrong, and said he was “confident” that it would retain the rights to hold the tournament.

Thoughts?

14 COMMENTS

Subscribe
Notify of
14 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
sadam
sadam
6 years ago

Well of course Michael Garcia is bargaining for a great deal for this to turn the tides and whitewash the investigation. it’s all good. The May 2o15 Fifa Congress will be rigged . The State will still have its much deserved 2o22 WC anyway 🙂

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago

The guy that delivers brown paper bags is on leave for a few weeks.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

You couldn’t make it up. FIFA investigates its own allegations it is corrupt and decides on actions to be taken if any and the transparency is that they will not even publish the report, so no outside scrutiny.

What a waste of time.

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

It’s bad enough that the guy investigating FIFA’s alleged corruption is working for FIFA. But how incredible that no matter what he finds, FIFA still can decide to take absolutely no action.

Why bother having any investigation at all.

Saleem
Saleem
6 years ago
Reply to  Michael Fryer

I agree, however I suspect the potential lash back from other entities involved would be enough to have FIFA tread carefully with this one. If people lose faith in the integrity of the games and the organization as a whole, it will have a great impact on their business.

sadam
sadam
6 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

other entities? you mean sponsors right?

Saleem
Saleem
6 years ago
Reply to  sadam

Yes, but also other nations that had submitted bids for the games, and even your average fan would lose interest if they feel that they are watching the sporting equivalent of WWE. Other questions of corruption would be raised too, such as are the games also rigged etc.

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

I agree with everything you have written Saleem, which is why I would find it unlikely that FIFA will make public any evidence of corruption.

But let’s wait and see. Perhaps I’ll be proved wrong and Sepp Blatter and his cronies aren’t a bunch of money and power hungry old men who don’t give a moment’s thought about football.

It might be time for the world football community to ask themselves if FIFA really has the best interest of the game, and the fans, at heart.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

Everyone has lost faith in FIFA and its president. Every time his face appeared on the screen in Brazil he was booed. #blatterout

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago

Both Russia and Qatar don’t deserve these WCups. Blatter can only talk about discrimination, because he is so corrupted that cannot say anything else.
He made this mess.
I would not like to be in Garcia’s shoes….he must see a lot of crap and still try to make see FIFA look “good”.

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago

Both Russia and Qatar don’t deserve these WCups. Blatter can only talk about discrimination, because he is so corrupted that cannot say anything else.
He made this mess.
I would not like to be in Garcia’s shoes….he must see a lot of dirt and still try to make see FIFA look “good”.

Myrddin
Myrddin
6 years ago

Make way for FIFA – DEAD man walking!

The Reporter
The Reporter
6 years ago

A disgrace on all counts. This self-serving corrupt body doesn’t just “serve” football, it has a major short-term impact on the distribution of sponsors funds and on local economies (Qatar excepted) yet sees no reason for transparency. Dreadful. When this report is published, if ever, then irrespective of the findings it will be deemed “too late” to change the awards.

BigDaddyDK
BigDaddyDK
6 years ago

It’s sad when Blatter has to play the race card to deflect criticism. I suppose scrutiny of Russia’s bid and criticism of how Brazil handled their WC preparations are racist too. SMH.

Related Articles

- Advertisment -

Most Read

Student scammed for QR 6,000 while ordering pizza online

0
With scam attacks on the rise, it's essential to protect yourself from fraudsters.  A Qatar University student who ordered a pizza worth QR 31 was...

Subscribe to Doha News below!

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.