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Bye bye Blatter: FIFA president quits after explosive Warner “bribe” letter

FIFA president Sepp Blatter quit his post at the helm of the governing football body this afternoon in a press conference that surprised the world.

Photo: Sepp Blatter heads for the exit in Zurich after resigning as FIFA president. (Copyright Valeriano Di Domenico/AFP 2015)
Photo: Sepp Blatter heads for the exit in Zurich after resigning as FIFA president.
(Copyright Valeriano Di Domenico/AFP 2015)

Barely a dozen journalists turned up in Zurich today for a hastily arranged press conference called by Blatter, who was re-elected as FIFA president last Friday on May 29. FIFA officials did not offer an agenda for the press conference but it turned out to be a landmark event.

“My mandate does not appear to be supported by everybody,” said Blatter. “This is why I will call an extraordinary meeting… I will organise extraordinary congress for a replacement for me as president. I will not stand…

“FIFA’s interest are dear to me. That’s why I have taken this decision. What counts most for me, is the institution of Fifa and football around the world.”

It was a remarkable turnaround from the 79-year-old Swiss administrator who, just last week, crowed about his successful re-election, and condemned critics as part of a plot hatched by United States and England in retaliation for their failed 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids.

Ironically, former FIFA vice-president and Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner might be the person who inadvertently brought him down.

Photo: Ex-FIFA VP Jack Warner (left) and FIFA president Sepp Blatter.
Photo: Ex-FIFA VP Jack Warner (left) and FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

Warner never delivered the “tsunami” he promised in 2011, when he was expelled from FIFA for conspiracy to rig the presidential election in favour of Qatari candidate Mohamed Bin Hammam. And the Trinidadian certainly never spoke about FIFA corrupt World Cup bidding processes, which the US Department of Justice suggested that football officials exploited to amass personal fortunes.

However, a shocking letter from the South Africa Football Association (SAFA) president Molefi Oliphant to FIFA general secretary Jérôme Valcke on 4 March 2008 might have been the tipping point.

The letter, which was revealed by South Africa’s Sunday Times News on May 31 and tweeted by PA journalist Martyn Ziegler, asked FIFA to pay what appeared to be a US$10 million bribe to Warner, the then CONCACAF president:

“SAFA (…) confirms that (1) FIFA shall withhold US$10 million from the Organising Committee’s future operational budget funding in order to finance the Diaspora Legacy Programme, thereby reducing the Organising Committee’s overall budget from US$423 million to US$413 million.

“(2) The Diaspora Legacy Programme shall be administered and implemented directly by the President of CONCACAF who shall act as the fiduciary of the Diaspora Legacy Programme Fund of US$10 million.”

Photo: United States Attorney General Loretta E Lynch.
Photo: United States Attorney General Loretta E Lynch.

This payment, according to the US indictment, was then made by FIFA, via a US account, to Warner’s Caribbean Football Union (CFU) bank account and two accounts in Trinidad.

The letter implicated the FIFA general secretary and arguably, by extension, Blatter, who was once general secretary himself before he succeeded former president Joao Havelange in 1998.

Thus far, FIFA has denied Valcke’s involvement and instead pointed the finger at former Finance Committee chairman, Julio Grondona.

“The payments totalling $10 million were authorised by the then chairman of the finance committee,” the world governing body responded, “and executed in accordance with the organisation regulations of FIFA.”

Grondona is not expected to deny the accusation, since he died last year. But Blatter, for once, was unable to ride out the controversy.

Photo: FIFA president Sepp Blatter (right) and general secretary Jerome Valcke.
Photo: FIFA president Sepp Blatter (right) and general secretary Jerome Valcke.

Last Friday, the FIFA president told a large media gathering: “For the next four years, I will be in command of this boat called Fifa and we will bring it back ashore, we will bring it back to the beach.

“The age is no problem. You have people that are 50 who look old.”

Four days later, though, Blatter said a hasty goodbye to FIFA in a surprise press conference.

Domenico Scala, FIFA’s head of audit and compliance committee, told the media that an election for a new president will be held between December 2015 and March 2016. Blatter will remain as president until then.

Blatter recommended new term limits for the FIFA president and executive committee members although such suggestions would need to be ratified by the broader football membership.

“I am dedicated to putting into place the conditions for the election of a new president,” said Scala. “There will be reforms to how the elections are conducted. Under the rules governing FIFA, the election must be voted on by members at the FIFA congress.

“The president will ask the executive committee to form an extraordinary congress to elect a new president. While the timing will ultimately be up to the executive committee the timing of election likely to be between December and March.

Photo: Brazil president Dilma Rousseff (left) and FIFA president Sepp Blatter. (Courtesy Fabrice Coffrini/ AFP)
Photo: Brazil president Dilma Rousseff (left) and FIFA president Sepp Blatter.
(Courtesy Fabrice Coffrini/ AFP)

“FIFA is determined to address the issues that are afflicting FIFA. We want to fundamentally reform the way in which people see FIFA.”

In 2011, South Africa President Jacob Zuma conferred the Order of Ikhamanga in Gold to Oliphant for his role in ensuring that South Africa won the bid. It is uncertain whether the recent revelations will prompt parallel investigations within that country.

Warner, who allegedly received the bribe, continues to declare his innocence of all charges and has vowed to fight extradition.

Last week, the ILP political leader criticised the Government for not defending him against the United States authorities.

Photo: FIFA president Sepp Blatter (right) and then FIFA vice-president Jack Warner (left) pose with former Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan during the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Nigeria.  (Copyright AFP 2014/Pius Utomi Ekpei)
Photo: FIFA president Sepp Blatter (right) and then FIFA vice-president Jack Warner (left) pose with former Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan during the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Nigeria.
(Copyright AFP 2014/Pius Utomi Ekpei)

FIFA president Sepp Blatter’s full resignation speech:

“I have been reflecting deeply about my presidency and about the forty years in which my life has been inextricably bound to FIFA and the great sport of football. I cherish FIFA more than anything and I want to do only what is best for FIFA and for football. I felt compelled to stand for re-election, as I believed that this was the best thing for the organization. That election is over but FIFA’s challenges are not. FIFA needs a profound overhaul.

“While I have a mandate from the membership of FIFA, I do not feel that I have a mandate from the entire world of football — the fans, the players, the clubs, the people who live, breathe and love football as much as we all do at FIFA.

Therefore, I have decided to lay down my mandate at an extraordinary elective Congress. I will continue to exercise my functions as FIFA President until that election.

“The next ordinary FIFA Congress will take place on 13 May 2016 in Mexico City. This would create unnecessary delay and I will urge the Executive Committee to organize an Extraordinary Congress for the election of my successor at the earliest opportunity. This will need to be done in line with FIFA’s statutes and we must allow enough time for the best candidates to present themselves and to campaign.

Photo: President Barack Obama (left) hosts FIFA president Sepp Blatter (centre) and then vice-president Jack Warner during the United States' ill-fated 2022 World Cup bid.
Photo: President Barack Obama (left) hosts FIFA president Sepp Blatter (centre) and then vice-president Jack Warner during the United States’ ill-fated 2022 World Cup bid.

“Since I shall not be a candidate, and am therefore now free from the constraints that elections inevitably impose, I shall be able to focus on driving far-reaching, fundamental reforms that transcend our previous efforts. For years, we have worked hard to put in place administrative reforms, but it is plain to me that while these must continue, they are not enough.

“The Executive Committee includes representatives of confederations over whom we have no control, but for whose actions FIFA is held responsible. We need deep-rooted structural change.

The size of the Executive Committee must be reduced and its members should be elected through the FIFA Congress. The integrity checks for all Executive Committee members must be organised centrally through FIFA and not through the confederations. We need term limits not only for the president but for all members of the Executive Committee.

I have fought for these changes before and, as everyone knows, my efforts have been blocked.

“This time, I will succeed.”

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the CEO and Editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

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178 comments

  1. Trinidad academy sign of Warner’s shady deals

    Published: 09 June 2015 Source: AFP
    http://tenplay.com.au/news/2015/06/09/trinidad-academy-sign-of-warner-s-shady-deals

    Trinidad and Tobago’s Centre of Excellence, a football academy built with millions of dollars from FIFA, today hosts more weddings and conventions than matches, a symbol of the shady dealings of fallen executive Jack Warner.

    The $22.5-million centre, which includes a stadium, a practice pitch, a swimming complex, a hotel and sprawling conference facilities, was supposed to train a new generation of footballers from around the Caribbean.

    But somehow it ended up registered as belonging to Warner personally instead of the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF), whose presidency the Trinidadian politician held at the time.

    And despite the giant football, complete with CONCACAF logo, that sits atop a pedestal near the entrance, the pastel-colored complex today does lots of non-football business — allegedly for the personal profit of Warner, who is also a former FIFA vice president.

    “The Centre of Excellence has blossomed into a multi-purpose facility capable of hosting a range of functions and events catering to individuals and companies including locals and tourists with added amenities for business travelers,” it boasts on its website.

    “In fact, the complex has staged and hosted everything from large executive events such as seminars, symposiums and trade shows including weddings, graduations and parties.”

    The centre is named for former FIFA president Joao Havelange of Brazil, who agreed to help fund it before stepping down in 1998 after a 24-year reign that was, like that of his successor Sepp Blatter, overshadowed by scandal.

    The complex boasts facilities such as a sprawling 5,000-capacity hall named for Blatter, who announced his resignation last week after US officials indicted Warner and eight other current or former FIFA officials in a sweeping investigation into corruption at world football’s governing body.

    A smaller 140-capacity conference room is named for Nelson Mandela, who helped campaign for FIFA to name South Africa the 2010 World Cup host nation in a vote that US investigators now suspect was swayed by a $10 million bribe paid to Warner.

    – Ownership scandal –

    The scandal over the Centre of Excellence erupted in 2012, 13 years after it was inaugurated and one year after Warner was forced to resign from all posts in international football amid allegations he tried to buy Caribbean officials’ votes for a FIFA presidential election.

    That year, CONCACAF lawyer John Collins caused an uproar at a meeting of the regional football body when he reported that the complex was registered to Warner.

    “I am shell-shocked, dismayed and upset,” then-CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb of the Cayman Islands — now also indicted in the US investigation — said at the time.

    FIFA has sought to wrest ownership of the complex from Warner, but he has insisted it belongs to the Caribbean Football Union, which he also used to run.

    The centre did not reply to requests for an interview.

    Security guards there now shoo away journalists, as they have been doing at all properties in Trinidad and Tobago linked to Warner, a politically powerful lawmaker, since his arrest on May 29 at the request of US authorities.

    An AFP correspondent managed to get as far as the lobby, where a large display case boasts lines of trophies, many of them awarded to Warner, before a security guard asked him to leave.

    – ‘Badge of honor’ –

    Lasana Liburd, a Trinidadian sports journalist who has followed Warner’s activities for two decades, said the centre is the “badge of honor” on the ex-football exec’s scandal-stained reign.

    Intended as the training ground of the Caribbean’s football future, “it has for the most part been used for flea markets and political rallies and everything else,” said Liburd, the editor of sports site wired868.com.

    “I am pretty sure it is the main money spinner for Warner right now,” he told AFP.

    “It is a symbol of Caribbean football and Warner, in that something that could have been used for so much good and empowering the region in terms of sport instead was used for personal gain and profit.”

    du/jhb/sst

  2. Ah ha. Development Officer. Is what he developed beside a big,fat paunch. Lol.

  3. According to Wikipedia article he was a FIFA Development Officer: 2015 FIFA corruption case http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2015_FIFA_corruption_case

  4. Lol, double his 6 million in earnings? Weren’t they filing in their 1040 that they earned $6,000 a year

  5. Yes he was on some committee or the other

  6. Didn’t know Daryll Warner was a member of FIFA as stated in the above post Leslie-Ann Boisselle.

  7. At Center of FIFA Scandal, a Divisive Politician in Jack Warner PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago — The prime minister of this Caribbean republic walked out of a session of Parliament on Friday, angrily chastising a fellow politician and former ally, Jack Warner, who finds himself and his two sons at the center of soccer’s widespread corruption scandal.

    “Here we are now, a focus of the international world, not for the good and great things but because of the actions of one man,” Kamla Persad-Bissessar, the prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago, admonished Mr. Warner in a confrontation that dominated the television news here Friday night and the front pages of Saturday’s newspapers.

    A onetime acting prime minister, as well as a former minister of national security and transportation, Mr. Warner, 72, is a polarizing populist, loved and loathed, a man about whom there appears to be no neutral opinion.

    Jack Warner, a former FIFA executive, at a meeting of his Independent Liberal Party in Trinidad and Tobago on Wednesday.Ex-FIFA Official Jack Warner Threatens to Spill ‘Avalanche’ of SecretsJUNE 4, 2015
    Jack Warner, a former vice president of FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, pointed to an article from The Onion in a video posted on his website on Sunday.Open Source: Ex-FIFA Official Cites Satirical Article From The Onion in His Self-DefenseMAY 31, 2015
    Local soccer players in the Annex, a sports facility in George Town, on Grand Cayman Island. The Cayman Islands’ influence in FIFA belies its population of only 58,000.How the Cayman Islands Became a FIFA PowerMAY 30, 2015
    The school in Visp named for Sepp Blatter, the head of FIFA, soccer’s world governing body. Mr. Blatter, who still has an apartment in Visp, lured international soccer stars to the small town.Sepp Blatter, FIFA’s Fallen Chief, Is Held Up as Hero at HomeJUNE 7, 2015
    Four years ago, Mr. Warner lost his lofty position as a vice president of FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, in a bribery scandal. Now he stands accused of racketeering by United States authorities, charged with, among other things, taking a $10 million payment to influence voting on South Africa to host the 2010 World Cup. He has denied any wrongdoing. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/08/sports/soccer/at-center-of-fifa-scandal-a-divisive-politician-in-jack-warner.html?_r=0

  8. I think that is the plan Dawn Cameron.

  9. Dawn, I am not making a hero list….not now or ever…but my main issue is the response to TT finally getting justice over Jack…which makes people sound sympathetic toward him…. no wonder the drivel that showed up on Yahoo can’t be properly challenged because of people are responding in a manner which makes it seem like they would rather Jack be left alone…he may be small time on a global scale, but he is big time in T&T and as corrupt as he is and was, he was acting PM because no one brought him to justice, so while I am not making a hero list…I am not about to use this opportunity to point fingers at the US for what they are attempting…

  10. … All should pay, inclusive of the US big wigs. If you going behind one as the fall guy and you have no Agenda then go behind all. Jack’s time will come I am sure.. but he didn’t pay himself, associations in many countries inclusive of the US didn’t just so pay out money without the sanction of their prime ministers, president and/or other top officials to win favour on bidding rights and awards, this is from time memorial so.. the US here isn’t on my hero list .

  11. Debbie Espinal yes I can be a bit cynical at times but trust me when I say I don’t care about what happens to Mr. Warner. What u do in darkness always comes to light. But when you mess up the entire global economy and all you get is a slap on the wrist then I’m still way pissed off about that.

  12. Clint Gordon you sure could have fooled me because your emphasis in all your posts is knocking the US for picking on Jack hence the reason i just got fed up of the whole mess.

  13. Probably, Clint, you should have led with “I am happy” … because otherwise your post sounds like a Sunshine editorial…just saying…

  14. What is actually happening Nicole Ulerie I actually am extremely happy…don’t get me wrong there cause quite frankly I could care less about Jack Warner or anyone who bribes and cheats their way through life. What I hate is a justice system that favors one above the other. Let them all rot in jail.

  15. I also wanna know what rules and regulations were put in place to oversee the mortgage-backed industry after Glass Steagall was struck down that these bankers should have paid with prison time? Anyway this is not a discussion about Glass Steagall or Hobby Lobby having a religion and so do not have to pay the women related birth stuff cause its a Christian company, this is about Jack and FIFA

  16. In this arena, where we are finally seeing some action happening where Jack Warner finally get a taste of jail and proceedings against him are going somewhere…you choose to emphasise equality for white collar crimes…? that’s the take home here? Nobody is saying that only Jack should pay…but here we are and he is being called to account and the best thing you can find to say is “the USA is a hypocrite”? smh

  17. Clint Gordon…the three most useless word in this world are coulda,shoulda and woulda….but you keep on pining for what should have happened…imma deal with what is actually happening

  18. If people talking about hypocrisy….shouldn’t they mention hypocrisy of all parties involved…? At least USA is still trying to bring justice…in this instance…so….what…are we supposed to think that somehow because there is some hypocrisy in what they are not doing in other cases, that *that* is the real issue here, when we as a nation have not been able to get rid of Jack Warner by simply pointing out his crimes or providing proof of them?

  19. Lasana Liburd you have no idea how I abhore white collar crimes. I’m just saying that it should be treated the same way for everyone.

  20. Clint…unless you’re living in some utopia….Jack aint d first person to take a bribe..nor will he be the last…..quite frankly I don’t care about who say who do what….I am only playing with what’s in my hand…..if and when others get charged, that will be dealt with…and if they get away with out ever getting charged…that is the way that cookie will crumble.

  21. Nicole smh indeed….like some don’t care what Jack did to ruin T&T and don’t want to get rid of him…..I say carry on USA…take it to the end…

  22. Nicole Ulerie I don’t care about neither of them. They did their crimes and they all deserve to stand in a court of law to defend themselves. I’m just pointing out the slight hypocrisy of this fiasco where zero bank executives have been made to pay for their fraudulent activities in sinking the entire global economy in 2008. They all were greeted on Capitol Hill with a slap on the wrist.

  23. TTFF paid for UNC dinner

    http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-06-05/ttff-paid-unc-dinner

    Rhondor Dowlat
    Published:
    Friday, June 5, 2015

    ILP political leader Jack Warner addresses supporters during a meeting at Battoo Street, Marabella, on Wednesday night. PHOTO: KRISTIAN DE SILVA
    T&T Football Association (TTFA) president, Raymond Tim Kee is now corroborating at least part of the claims by former Fifa vice-president, Caribbean Football union president and TTFF adviser Jack Warner that he (Warner) funded the People’s Partnership 2010 general election campaign.

    There is currently a war of words between Warner and the People’s Partnership over his claims that he funded the party’s election campaign with money sourced through his Fifa dealings.

    While Warner is stickling to those claims and has allegedly provided information to a group of attorneys to prove this, the UNC continues to deny the claim.

    But speaking exclusively to the T&T Guardian yesterday, Tim Kee said he knew for a fact that former Warner used his own money to fund at least one UNC event which he (Tim Kee) had knowledge of.

    Tim Kee was referring to an invoice he allegedly received from a popular hotel and conference centre in Port-of-Spain which had billed the TTFA for a “UNC Banquet Dinner.”

    Although initially admitting to not really wanting to let the “cat-out-of-the-bag,” Tim Kee said, “I don’t want to make it an issue yet. I have to find the document first.”

    He added, “I know of this because with the invoice were some notes which indicated the items.”

    Tim Kee also assured that he knew for a fact that Warner took money from the TTFF which went straight to the UNC.

    “The man took our money and gave it to politics,” he said.

    Tim Kee said Warner was committed to the UNC cause in 2010.

    “Knowing Mr Warner as I do, he does not give up until he comes to the end of his effort and all strategies, for which he is well known, were applied in that effort to put the UNC party into power,” he said, saying he was sure Warner used the monies he would have acquired from Fifa to spend in the 2010 election.

    “I would think it is public knowledge when he became chairman, he had a goal and that goal was to take the UNC party into government,” he said.

    Similar football strategy

    Tim Kee explained that Warner had a similar behaviour and strategy in football and in the earlier years mortgaged his house in a bid to raise money for football and to take care of some other expenses in relation to the sport.

    “That was the sort of passion he (Warner) had demonstrated over the years for local football. What happens subsequent to those years I am not in a position to converse on and comment,” he said.

    During an address to the nation on Wednesday night, Warner, a former national security minister and now political leader of the Independent Liberal Party, reiterated that there was a link between Fifa’s millions and the PP’s 2010 campaign.

    He disclosed that he had compiled a series of cheques and supporting documents that would corroborate his financial support to the PP’s successful general campaign in 2010. The documents, Warner said, were already in the hands of attorneys.

    Warner is currently out on $2.5 million bail after he appeared in the Port-of-Spain Magistrates Court on charges of corruption and racketeering conspiracy in relation to his dealings with Fifa, stemming out of an indictment by the US government, which is now seeking to extradite him to the US to face those charges.

  24. Thanks for your two cents Clint. So is it that you think no one should be arrested for white collar crime until Koch is? That makes for a better world to you?

  25. USA could do whatever, I am not living there…Jack has done too much and our justice system is not doing anything so I say kudos to USA for at least attempting to bring Jack to justice…and hopefully get him out of our hair…who am I to point fingers at USA when they are doing our country a favour, in trying to bring Jack to justice?

  26. If you think the Koch Brothers don’t bribe members of Congress to do their dirty work then I’m probably living on Mars. Whether it’s an election cycle or not…unlimited money into any governing body makes the process ripe for corruption. Just my 2 cents.

  27. Clint sounding just like people that saying leave Jack cuz Ish and Steve still here…smh

  28. Citizens United? How does a company having the right of a person do anything on this level?

  29. cha-guanas west…lol Jack asking for respect…

  30. I think America convicting anyone of bribery is laughable when Citizens United made doing the same thing constitutional.

  31. Blatter ‘knew about SA payment’

    Sepp Blatter must have known about the 10million US dollar payment sent from a FIFA account to the disgraced former vice-president Jack Warner, the former UEFA president Lennart Johansson has claimed. https://sport.bt.com/sport-football/news/blatter-knew-about-sa-payment-S11363985041176

  32. He quit in his 5th term , the mere fact that he could be at the helm of world governing body of anything is blatant corruption by itself these things happen because we constantly told we are free all the while being forced to obey , sheep cows an most free range animals have similar lives without the consumerism an distractions human are subjected to so we never have time to think critically and act accordingly so the nastiness that pass as western freedoom runs amuck on the simple human until it sinks so bad it brakes an MSM steps in an downplays spins the mess into that’s nothing really there’s more Financial fraud going on world wide in the last 24 years that will make JAW & company numbers look like child’s play what take place ? Banks that stole trillions being charged billions none of dear CEO’ CFO’ CIO’ COO’ facing extradition or Interpol has warrants for them actually they get bonuses from taxpayer bail out money

  33. Damn straight USA i’m glad you played well. You did what our governments didn’t have the balls to do which is to get that corrupt bastard off our backs and hopefully in a jail. Hope you press for Ish and Steve too.

  34. The irony of all this is that the US supreme court has made bribery legal in their electoral process. I guess money funneling in from the Koch Brothers to buy politicians isn’t bribery…it’s constitutional. Well played America…well played.

  35. Lasana Liburd Saw you on BBC 4.00PM News at the JacK Warner press conference last night. You’re the Man.

  36. You feel anybody going to Panama In this Town Judy-ann Stewart??? They so damn boldface with deyself that they sure their UNC die hards will still vote for them. It will take the FBI to swoop down here and pick up all of them before we see that and God face.

  37. John Gill, I have always felt that some people would have been looking at the election results from Panama … and that was before this FIFA nonsense!

  38. Judy-ann Stewart they have sufficient money to buy a luxury air bus to take all of them to Panama……….Kamla, Sewerage and Moonilal already booked.
    I am so hoping that Jack Warner could in some way reveal empirical evidence that implicated Winston Cuffy to the money laundering……..I couldn’t be “seriouser.”

  39. Yuh know, if not now, then when should corruption be investigated and prosecuted? We haven’t done it but no one else should?

  40. Best news i heard today, Chung Mong-joon, to consider running for Fifa presidency…. If anyone can make a difference, without being tainted, it will be him…..

  41. ???? Brian TriniOne Lewis. I asked a simple question. Who is shouting at whom? If we cannot engage in civil and intelligent discourse without ridicule then…. ????

  42. Kenneth:Seriously, shouting at me over this issue is far too emotive to utilize my time. If you like to drink Kool Aid without thinking beyond the mug of juice, that is you. Every one here know FIFA is corrupt. That is not the issue. Just stay there and follow the lead blindly without question.

  43. Lasana, the media, like politicians are free to say whatever they want. The fact is ‘today is today and yesterday is yesterday’ and it very well be that Blatter would not resign just as he may indeed do so. The interpretation by the western media is as it is for all propaganda machinery. Geopolitricks are always in motion. FIFA was always corrupt and few would ask – ‘Why now?’ and ‘Why so?’

    At the end of this I see a few things coming about in the coming years – Russia and Qatar would not host the World Cups and USA and England may. Also, the one nation / one vote would be squashed and the reasons given would be pushed down our throats as ‘reasonable’ and those of you who don’t see shall readily agree.

    As such racism and violence, as is the innate nature of these nations, shall regain prominence and be the accepted norm of the New World (order).

  44. They will have to have a direct flight because if they stop anywhere…

  45. Is ah whole set ah dem moving to Panama

  46. this story is very thin. the Washington Post’s standards needs tightening up. maybe they should read Wired868?

  47. So Step Ladder will be around for another 4 months to secure his funds in a Cook Island trust and hopefully move to his new hometown in Panama

  48. CNN says that FIFA’s constitution requires 4 months notice in the event of resignation.

  49. Btw Dennis – disagree with your last part about the automotive industry but the rest is fact.

  50. You could never convince me that these sponsors who have nothing to say about hundreds of deaths of migrant workers in Qatar building World Cup infrastructure gave a damn to force Blatter out over a financial scandal.

  51. Lasana, it turns out Blazer testified that there was agreement among a group of FIFA Officials to accept bribes to award South Africa the 2010 World Cup. The letter wasn’t enough and that is probably what drove Sepp to resign. He was of course the one who championed that award.

  52. i’m VERY uncomfortable with the role the media seems to be willing to assign to the sponsors.
    If people think that a FIFA run by Sepp & Jack was bad—wait till a private company starts calling the shots.
    Banks: BILLIONS in fines levied against most of the leading banks
    Sports shoe and equipment: near-slave labour standards in the sweatshops
    Automotive: backing fossil fuel consumption because alternative fuel development costs are too high.

  53. who me? no, the dead guy. ohhhhhh

  54. and if yuh could teef from Haiti yuh could teef from a vagrant eh…..

  55. Been saying that all along Lasana Liburd…We all have to play with the hands we’re dealt…so if there is evidence of crimes committed by 20 out of 20k…prosecute the 20….I’m not going to sit here and say others also committed crimes so let the rest slide…and if taking bribes, illegally profiting off of World Cup tickets and stealing from HAITI is not considered corruption….we even worse off than we ever thought we were at this point

  56. Brian TriniOne Lewis, Blatter didn’t say resign. But he didn’t say intend to resign either. He has conceded his mandate and will step down as soon as the new president is elected.
    Many reporters including me interpreted that to mean he has resigned, effective the next general council. You might not.
    Either way, he has promised to leave after the election between December 2015 and March 2016. No matter what anyone things about his statement, that fact is constant in all reports and is the crux of the matter.
    As for geopolitics, Jack Warner and company are being tried for racketeering and not for taking the World Cup to Qatar.
    If, as you say, this has nothing to do with corruption, then those men have nothing to worry about. They will be declared innocent of all charges.
    If they are guilty of corruption, then I think it disingenuous to say that their case isn’t about corruption. Such talk is for innocent men to say.
    That “why don’t you go after the real criminals” bit is laughable in a mature society.

  57. Kenny was for Jack’s special projects. Lol

  58. Ahhh… KPMG. Jack Warner’s favourite accounting firm… And still the accountants for the TTFA.

  59. “KPMG was also the auditor and adviser for the official Russia and Qatar organizing committees when they prepared the winning bids that are now targeted in corruption investigations in the U.S. and Switzerland.”

  60. Sepp Blatter is still in the job as President until a new elections is held.

  61. Official says FBI probe includes 2018 and 2022 World Cup host awards – Reuters

    Here’s a news break from Reuters:

    The FBI’s investigation of soccer governing body FIFA includes scrutiny of how the organization awarded the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 competition to Qatar, a US law enforcement official said.

    The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Reuters that the review of the awards to host the tournament would be part of a probe that is looking beyond the allegations in an indictment announced a week ago of officials of world soccer’s governing body.

    Swiss prosecutors said then that they were investigating the 2018 and 2022 bids.

  62. Yeah have been following Lasana’s writings as well, he is our own Jennings when it comes to this story

  63. Shva, you can check http://www.wired868.com for all Andrew Jennings stories.

  64. I find these “America just sour, Britain just vex” conspiracy theories amusing. Sepp Blatter is a European.

  65. Then please clarify this for me Brian TriniOne Lewis! Zurich: “Fifa on Tuesday admitted that it had processed a $10-million (Dh36.72 million) payment from South Africa to a disgraced football official but denied that the world body’s secretary-general Jerome Valcke was involved.
    Fifa said that a former Fifa finance committee chief who died last year, Argentine Julio Grondona, authorised the payment to Jack Warner.
    Warner, one of 14 people facing corruption charges in the United States over $150 million in bribes, was at the time Grondona’s deputy as head of Fifa’s finance committee.
    The South African government asked Fifa to “withhold” money intended for the organisers of the 2010 World Cup and send it to a development project in the Caribbean run by Warner, a Fifa statement said.
    According to US investigators, the $10 million was a bribe promised to Warner and his deputy Chuck Blazer to secure the 2010 World Cup. South Africa has strongly denied any wrongdoing.” What am I missing here?

  66. FIFA was corrupt BEFORE Jack Warner and Blatter and company. This is a geopolitical move to control an entity that not only was moved from the verge of bankruptcy under Blatter – but has been allowing nations the Western World has ‘issues’ with.

    For example the US demanded of Blatter that Iran not be allowed to take part in the 2006 World Cup. He refused to allow them to bully him and FIFA. The US/England do not want the World Cup to be held in Russia and also a Muslim nation (Qatar).

    I fully expect the media is going to be used to justify the change away from FIFA’s One Nation/One Vote voting policy as the Euro Colonial and USA cannot control and bully under that system.

    This series of events has NOTHING to do with corruption.

  67. Another example of how racial division leads to corruption and increases economic disparity.

  68. A man is President of a organisation and don’t know what is happening in that organisation,,,, that alone was grounds to go Blatter,,,,,,, Anil in charge of life sport and say he didn’t know ppl thieving,,,, what ah thing.

  69. What is the “The Diaspora Legacy Programme” and does it exist?

  70. Just wait Pedro Chin It will come.

  71. I find it curious that Havelange name has not been even implicated in the kuchoor

  72. I would not be surprised if Joao de Havilange passes in this rush also.. can FIFA survive this or will they have to rebrand themselves after a cleanup?

  73. Did he quit or is he ‘set to quit’. Big difference Lasana

  74. so dose this me mean that Luis Figo can look for a running as FIFA president or maybe Shaka Hislop?

  75. Not sure how much of a part the sponsors played. I think Blatter knows he’s under investigation and his backside squeezing. Don’t be surprised if he cuts a deal like Blazer and sell out the others. The man is 79 and not prepared to pick up soap in a jail cell.

  76. Leslie-Ann i also suspect the worldwide sponsors played a huge role in this move too, Coca-Cola, VISA etc

  77. Steups…assuming not blabbing did not know about the alleged blatant corruption taking place under him and now there are worldwide organizations backing these charges leading one to believe its more than smoke and mirrors, then what can of manager are you (deja vu here). Further, with all these allegations swirling around fifa, people going to vote him back in? Madness!

  78. Why waste everyone’s time and energy going up ? #theloveofpower

  79. I suspected thats why he stepped down Leslie-Ann

  80. Panama he goes Shiva, along with all the other politicians in TNT, watch and see

  81. Step Ladder needs to move to a non-extradition country one time

  82. Savitri my dear lady I was thinking the same thing as I was writing

  83. He knew he was a target before the election. Why even go up?

  84. Heard that this am. Not surprising – when in doubt, blame the dead guy.

  85. “Thus far, FIFA has denied Valcke’s involvement and instead pointed the finger at former Finance Committee chairman, Julio Grondona.
    “The payments totalling $10 million were authorised by the then chairman of the finance committee,” the world governing body responded, “and executed in accordance with the organisation regulations of FIFA.”
    Grondona is not expected to deny the accusation, since he died last year.”

  86. Dennis Allen and Kendall Tull: “Thus far, FIFA has denied Valcke’s involvement and instead pointed the finger at former Finance Committee chairman, Julio Grondona.
    “The payments totalling $10 million were authorised by the then chairman of the finance committee,” the world governing body responded, “and executed in accordance with the organisation regulations of FIFA.”
    Grondona is not expect to deny the accusation, since he died last year.”

  87. Oh geed… Jack you could ah hold it back a few more days…

  88. Jack go dead if he ever go to the U.S. And face ah trial eh…ah not wishing it on him

  89. Exactly Lasana. The letter isn’t enough and absent someone singing like a canary, that will be hard to prove. And I still think at best, it implicates Valcke, not Blatter. Definitely something more in the mortar than the pestle for sure.

  90. “Some ppl have no shame”….”It’s better to leave with grace than resign with disgrace…!!!”

  91. And they better hope they have some policy documents from the supposed Diaspora Programme. Something better than Warner saying: send funds here…
    If not, Good luck to them with their defence!

  92. If they can show proper documentation and proposal about Diaspora Programme from in 2008 and so forth, then they might have a shot at beating it.
    If the programme only existed in an email and fax with the money going to Warner’s bank account… Good luck to them with that!

  93. yes, a LOT will come out in those hearings, as the USDOJ will have already played their card—it will be the turn for the accused to play their defense.

  94. We will see once Webb loses his extradition battle Dennis Allen. I’m not sure if they can be held. But I’m not sure they are clear either. Time will tell.
    Chuck Blazer was FIFA general secretary during the US 1994 World Cup. Let’s see.

  95. Okay Kendall Tull. I accept that point in terms of the implementation of the programme. I would say that there should still be a responsibility from two organisations that agreed to make a US$10 million to find out.
    And what proof can they show of such intent?
    The letter is likely just part.

  96. EXACTLY Kendall Tull. the mere fact that neither Sepp nor Valcke have been detained anywhere is instructive. bottom line—the US case is built around the money, and the ultimate responsibility over the big money wine in FIFA are those two men.

  97. That is also why wilful ignorance will be difficult to prove.

  98. Read the letter over and it says the funds were to implement the programme. That means that I expected you to start the programme and you didn’t. You can say that the letter proves misappropriation but not fraud.

  99. Well, the letter surfaced after his reelection Kendall Tull. That’s why I think it made a difference.
    If I work for you and I make a $100 payment to Kenneth to put in a fund that doesn’t exist. You say Kenneth is guilty unless there is proof that I knew.
    Kendall, what I’m saying is there is a precedent in US law that says I have to justify making that payment and prove that I wasn’t wilfully ignorant to the fact that Kenneth’s company didn’t exist.

  100. That might explain why no action against Valcke had been taken thus far.

  101. i still going through the indictments doh…LOTS of pages :/

  102. i read the story, yes. the beneficiary is a US acct, the PAYEE is not. the law cannot stretch outside of it’s jurisdiction. they will lose that case if they try to go after him for that in a US court.
    the payee acct is in Zurich, not so? If that is the case, then the payee is in violation under Swiss jurisdiction. The FBI could dance it however they want—unless the Swiss go after him, Valcke will have no case to answer to in his extradition.

  103. You are deliberately missing the point Lasana. The letter definitely proves misappropriation by Warner. Proving fraud requires more as intent by both parties has to be proven. Unless Warner rolls over, that isn’t possible from just the letter.

  104. Not saying that that it wasn’t a bribe, just that the letter alone isn’t proof of that.

  105. Dennis Allen and Kendall Tull, I am guided by the US attorney general who said the US has jurisdiction over a crime that was committed through its financial institution.
    FIFA paid that bribe through a US account. You read the story Dennis?

  106. And the fools, think they operating in Trinidad and Tobago, by passing money through the American banking system all willy nilly! Depositing money throughout North America in amounts less than $10,000 foolishly believing that the IRS will not notice! They think it is the T&T FIU or what. Joke is on them…

  107. True Lasana but as I mentioned previously, Blatter could not have been surprised by this if he was culpable. That’s why I don’t think that this was the causal factor.

  108. And if the programme doesn’t exist. You cannot say give US$10 million to something that doesn’t exist Kendall Tull. Again, that is fraud.
    If you say “Well I thought the guy was going to start program and use money wisely” then there wouldn’t be such a thing as fraud really.
    Then the givers of bribes would never be arrested. You would make a nonsense of white collar crime to accept that premise.

  109. As I said before, if I gave with the intent to start a programme and you used the funds for other purposes, that’s misappropriation on your part.

  110. Kendall Tull, let them show proof of intent to start programme then. Handing over money isn’t proof of intent. Wilful ignorance might pop up again.

  111. my issues are that the T&T banks will all get off scotch free in this—even though there have been CLEAR violations of the money laundering laws. can some T&T attorney comment on THOSE possibilities?

  112. Did programme ever start Kendall? And if not whey de morney??
    Ah setta ole tief!!!

  113. Ah ha….so dais it Lasana that Diaspora thinga majig doesn’t exist!!! Was tossing it around to figure out what made the letter so damning but hadn’t had much time today to check out the story in more detail……
    Ah setta ole tief!!!

  114. That continues to astonish me. They just turn a blind eye to corruption. What you see in that memorandum is how to pocket $10 million dollars USD. The Diaspora Legacy Program does not exist yet is overseen by the President of CONCACAF, Jack Warner! You search for that program today, yet you cannot find it. I’ll tell you where it is… in Jack Warner’s pocket!

  115. I think world football really must give a massive thank you ( in cash or kind) to Onion fan, Mr Warner for kindly accepting 10 mil from S Africa to further football in the diaspora. That really magnanimous gesture finally put the boot in on Sepp. Others tried and failed. As the British press might say, ‘It’s Jack wot did it’. I think you should be leading the ‘thank yous’, Lasana. 🙂

  116. The programme didn’t have to exist prior though. One could easily argue that the intent was to start said programme.

  117. Valcke will be charged—if at all—in Swiss courts. the US doesnt have jurisdiction over that transaction. under the RICO Act FIFA will have to be declared an international criminal enterprise in order for the US courts to have jurisdiction in that particular transaction.

  118. I guess we will see in time. Blatter would also have known about this before the elections so it cannot possibly have been a surprise.

  119. I would think so Kendall. I’m surprised that we haven’t heard of Valcke’s fate yet. But let’s see what happened next.
    In the Visa scandal over a decade ago, a Judge ruled than Valcke was so dishonest that he even lied when speaking about his other lies. He was the FIFA head of marketing then. Blatter promoted him.

  120. There is a terminology called: Wilful ignorance.
    A Judge would rule whether Valcke and FIFA ought to have known that their US$10 million payment was going to a company that doesn’t exist.

  121. Ah. Fair enough but that puts Valcke in the frying pan, not Blatter directly and he hasn’t gone anywhere. Even if he rolled over on Blatter, he would still have to go.

  122. The Diaspora Programme referenced doesn’t exist Kendall Tull and Dennis Allen. That means it was fraud. SAFA and Warner must have obviously both known. And FIFA facilitated it.
    Kendall, have you heard of willful ignorance? The US has used that precedent before. Wilful ignorance won’t save you in the US courts.

  123. The programme mentioned in the letter Kendall Tull doesn’t exist. Don’t mistake cunning for intelligence. They are not always the same. Don’t give Blatter and FIFA too much credit.
    It is not misappropriated funds if the Diaspora Programme doesn’t exist. It is fraud.

  124. Lasana – the letter gave a reason. I would think it highly unlikely that a bribe was paid in this manner. These people are greedy but they don’t strike me as being that stupid. I don’t think this letter does much at all.

  125. There will be more revelations to come. Not only concacaf but also other confederations!

  126. Let’s be clear Lasana. The US is claiming it’s a bribe but there is no proof of that presented at this time. The only thing that is clear is that the funds were intended for CONCACAF and they were allegedly misappropriated by Warner. That is a very different thing.

    Something else is at play here.

  127. Maybe Deosaran Bisnath. But the US authorities are not playing around. The doors are closing in.

  128. I’m speculating here Kendall Tull. I don’t see what else has changed since last Friday when Blatter was re-elected.
    FIFA will be saying that it gave US$10 million to Warner without knowing why. Whether they can defend that position, I don’t know.
    The fact is the US authorities are getting closer. A bribe was paid. And it was paid by FIFA through a US account.
    Maybe the brokers behind the scene decided it was time to cut their losses and run.

  129. Kendall Tull I hear you on your comments…there must be much more than this letter which really does not prove bribery in the least. My qyestion is where did the money come from to open CONCACAF? Which country gave up possibly $189 million to open this CONCACAF? There is a lot in that answer….#justasking

  130. Ohh the plot thickens ***Grabbing Popcorn***

  131. Thats a book you asking for Ras

  132. Lasana Liburd could this be another FIFA trick? He could be buying time until they can hold fresh elections (December earliest, so they say). In the interim, he will do all he can to “reform” and then offer himself as candidate. As you know only too well, these FIFA crooks are brilliant at trickery. Blatter is trying a Hail Mary, and it may work.

  133. “gift”…it was a “gift” people…lets not forget that. and a noble one at that! think of all the work the…[wait, let me check the fund name again…gimme ah sec]
    that THAT FUND…has done in the Diaspora!!! why the legacy-ness of the #EPIC works done by this noble gift was…wow. epic and noble indeed!

  134. Just thinking legally, there no proof in the letter upon which a viable case can be based. Perhaps the lawyers need to chime in and advise?

  135. I am learning so much about what real power could do. Lasana it would be nice if you could write over the course of two or three days, a comprehensive account of this entire sordid affair.

  136. And being instructed to redirect a payment due to SA doesn’t constitute knowledge that it was a bribe.

  137. Yes but that doesn’t constitute proof of anything. The Executive reports to him and he hasn’t taken responsibility for them up to last Friday.

  138. Needs can always be met, but greed can never be fulfilled.

  139. Kendall Tull, the FIFA general secretary answers only to the FIFA president.
    This story came out on May 31. And then hit the world after a retweet.
    I am sure Blatter and Valcke discussed it.

  140. Don’t understand why this would have prompted his resignation Lasana. It isn’t addressed to him nor did he sign off on the payment.

  141. well well well, someone going to get licks and might just have a cell nxt to Jack.

  142. It linked the FIFA general secretary directly to the payment of a bribe. And the FIFA general secretary answers only to the president.

  143. Ravi Maharaj No need to wonder. We all know they turn a blind eye to the Mr Bigs. How do you think they can declare such huge profits at the end of every quarter.

  144. He has a lot of time between now and March next year, to mess things up, really good. He should have walked away last week, but stayed on to jumbie up things. All planned, if you ask me.

  145. More revelations to come, implications and ramifications far and wide !

  146. This, right here is why, people with glass windows must not throw stones. Now everybody’s pie-in-the-sky is falling down. Complicit governments/political parties, next. Oh what many tangled webs…

  147. i wonder who accepted the money in the banks without reporting it to the FIU? Hmmmmm…i wonder if there are more people wiring money without proper protocol being followed…..

    https://youtu.be/_Ib5H5auk-c

  148. The ole saying “little axe does cut down big tree” a measly 10 million by TIEFA standards bring down Sepp. The tsumani start yuh think??

  149. You really think that SA money was the difference Lasana? He never signed any documents authorising the payment as I understand.

  150. That is just the tip of the iceberg.

  151. It is clearly blatant corruption… bold in your face corruption.

  152. Lasana, yuh cleanin house, bredda..lol

  153. Scotty Ranking

    All I can say is wow! The sting in the tail has finally caught up with Sepp and hit him the ultimate spirit blow! this is vindication, old chap. The Belly has hit The Mouth and felled The Beast!