FIFA presidency: Prince Ali loses bid to suspend election

FIFA presidency: Prince Ali loses bid to suspend election

Thursday, February 25, 2016 9:22 am

Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan

Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan

FIFA presidential candidate Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein of Jordan has lost an appeal at sport’s highest tribunal,Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) asking for Friday’s election to be suspended unless transparent voting booths are used, he said on Wednesday night.

“I regret that the system let us down,” said Prince Ali in a statement on Wednesday night.

“The only positive aspect of today’s ruling is that the election will now go forward as planned, and the media will be closely watching for any evidence that anyone is photographing their ballot.”

Central to Prince Ali’s concerns seems to be that pressure will be put on the 209 voting members to back a particular candidate.
Two of his rivals, Asian Football Confederation head Shaikh Salman Bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa and UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino, have been criticised by Prince Ali and another candidate, Frenchman Jérôme Champagne, who have accused the duo of trying to “swamp” Friday’s vote with supporters.

These allies could in theory lobby on their behalf, it is claimed.

One of Prince Ali’s lawyers, Renaud Semerdjian, told AFP: “Only a transparent booth can prove that each voter is following his heart and conscience and that there are no forced votes, by preventing voters taking photos of their voting paper to prove that they have followed voting instructions.”

This is Prince Ali’s second attempt at securing the FIFA Presidency, after he was defeated by Blatter in May.

The Swiss resigned just four days later and has now been banned for eight years due to a “disloyal” payment he allegedly made to UEFA President Michel Platini, who also received the sanction.

UEFA had initially called for that election to be postponed, as various arrests and allegations of corruption engulfed football.


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