Connect with us

Sports

CAF’s Ahmed refused visa for US entry to attend FIFA Council meeting

Published

on

CAF’s Ahmed refused visa for US entry to attend FIFA Council meeting

Africa’s leading football official, Ahmad Ahmad from Madagascar, has been refused a visa to travel to the US to attend the crucial FIFA Council meetings in Miami at the end of this week, according to African sources.

Ahmad, president of the Confederation of Africa Football (CAF), is a key ally of FIFA president Gianni Infantino and would have been one of the important voices of support for Infantino’s global calendar plans.

The reasons for the denial of Ahmad’s visa by US authorities are unknown. There are no US government-issued travel bans to the US on Malagasy citizens. Madagascar is not part of the US’s ESTA Visa waiver programme.

The denial of a US visa is particularly unusual for such a high ranking official attending an important meeting in the country. It is not clear whether he will be able to appeal the decision in time to attend or whether higher US government forces will intervene on his behalf – much would obviously depend on the reasons for the visa denial

The US is taking the lead in hosting the World Cup in 2026 and while it questions their travel policy, it does also spotlight the CAF president who has come under increasing criticism by his own supporters within Africa for an increasingly autocratic decision-making style at the confederation.

Ahmad Ahmad (C) of Madagascar is congratulated by Fifa president Gianni Infantino (2ndR) after being elected the new president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in Addis Ababa on 16 March 2017.

That style has led to an open letter from CAF executive committee member Musa Bility, former president of the Liberian FA, questioning Ahmad’s authority to make what have apparently been unilateral decisions on the hosting of the Africa Cup of Nations as well as on the ethics surrounding a deal for a new betting sponsor.

Another executive committee member, Isha Johansen from Sierra Leone, has similarly called for more African unity and transparency in CAF’s decision making. Both Bility and Johansen were vocal supporters of Ahmad in his 2017 election campaign that saw him unseat long time CAF president Issa Hayatou.

That lead to a sweeping change of CAF management with Ahmad relying heavily on his allies in Morocco. His Moroccan alliances now look to be alienating the rest of his support in Africa.

CAF’s secretary general Amry Fahmy returned recently from illness to find Ahmad had effectively sidelined him with the appointed of a ‘General Co-ordinator’ from Morocco who had become the main liaison between CAF’s executive committee (exco) and its full time executive, often taking decisions that had not been agreed by the exco.

Fahmy, an Egyptian, was part of a family dynasty at CAF following in the footsteps of his father Mustapha, who held the post until 2010 before being appointed as the director of competitions at FIFA. Mustapha had taken over the position from his father Mourad.

With the waning Egyptian influence in CAF has come the very rapid increase of influence from Morocco. An influence that has caused pan-regional concern with CAF recently holding all its key meetings in the country rather than at its headquarters in Cairo. Moroccans hold key positions leading and managing the finance committee while there at least 12 Moroccans reportedly sitting on CAF committees.

It is understood that Ahmad’s concentration of power and decision making has even raised concerns within the Egyptian FA, traditionally a leading power in the African region and no friend of the previous Hayatou regime in its dieing days. Egyptian president Hany Abo Rida, a hugely significant supporter and facilitator at Ahmad’s election, is understood to have reservations over the direction CAF has taken.

Ahmad to a large degree has relied on his influence at, and the protection of, FIFA, to bolster his decision-making confidence. But it looks like he will not be in Miami to give support to, or rally support from, his friends. And it looks like those within his previous support base may no longer be comfortable with his governing style, and indeed the governance surrounding it.

Source: insideworldfootball.com

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sports

2019 AFCON: In-form Baba Rahman returns to Ghana squad after two-year absence

Published

on

2019 AFCON: In-form Baba Rahman returns to Ghana squad after two-year absence

2019 AFCON: In-form Baba Rahman returns to Ghana squad after two-year absence

Abdul Baba Rahman has been recalled into the national team ahead of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations after a two-year absence.

Baba, who excelled on a six-month loan at French Ligue 1 side Stade de Reims, is returning to the squad since suffering an injury while playing for the nation at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.

The experienced left-back has been named in a 29-man provisional squad announced by coach Kwesi Appiah on Tuesday.

He is expected to be key for the side in their quest to end a 37-year trophy drought.

Check out the full squad below;

Goalkeepers

Richard Ofori (Maritzburg United, South Africa, Lawrence Ati- Zigi (Sochaux, Montbeliard, France), and Felix Annan (Asante Kotoko, Ghana).

Defenders

John Boye (Metz, France), Andy Yiadom (Reading, England, Abdul Baba Rahman (Reims, France), Lumor Agbenyenu (Goztepe A.S, Turkey), Kassim Nuhu, (Hoffeinham, Germany,) Jonathan Mensah (Columbus Crew SC, USA), Joseph Aidoo (Genk, Belguim), Nuhu Musa (St Gallen, Switzerland), Joseph Attamah (Basaksehir, Turkey), and Mohammed Alhassan (Hearts of Oak, Ghana)

Midfielders

Mubarak Wakaso (Deportivo Alaves, Spain), Thomas Partey (Atletico Madrid, Spain), Kwadwo Asamoah (Internazionle, Italy), Ebenezer Ofori (New York FC, USA), Afriyie Acquah (Empoli, Italy), Andre Ayew ( Fenerbache, Turkey), Christian Atsu (Newcastle United, England), Samuel Owusu (Cukaricki, Serbia), Thomas Agyepong (Hibernian, Scotland), Yaw Yeboah (Numancia, Spain), Abdul Fatawu (Asante Kotoko, Ghana).

Strikers

Asamoah Gyan (Kayserispor, Turkey), Jordan Ayew (Crystal Palace, England), Adbul Majeed Waris ( Nantes, France), Caleb Ekuban (Trabzonspor, Turkey and Kwabena Owusu (Leganes, Spain).

Ghana have been drawn in Group F alongside Guinea-Bissau, Benin and defending champions Cameroon.

Source: GHANAsoccernet.com

Continue Reading

Sports

I can’t disregard Akufo-Addo – Asamoah Gyan

Published

on

I can’t disregard Akufo-Addo – Asamoah Gyan

Asamoah Gyan has made a u-turn on his decision to retire from the senior national team.
His decision follows a conversation between him and President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday after he announced on Monday that he had recused himself from the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations and subsequently retired from the Black Stars.

The development, according to what Graphic Online has gathered followed a communication by Coach Kwasi Appiah to Gyan that he wants to make him the general captain of the team.

But in a statement issued Wednesday, the 33-year-old forward said he cannot disregard the President’s request for him to change his decision and has, for that matter, decided to make himself available for selection by Coach Kwasi Appiah.

“A presidential request is one that cannot be disregarded. I have had the opportunity to speak with the father of the nation, the President of the Republic, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, who, though respecting my wishes as spelt in my letter of 20th May, 2019, has asked me to rescind my decision to retire permanently from the Black Stars.

“I have taken the request of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in good faith, and will make myself available for selection by coach Kwasi Appiah.

“My desire to help Ghana end the over three-decade-long wait to annex the AFCON trophy still burns strong and I remain committed to serving this great nation and the people of Ghana,” the statement said.

Source:Graphic.com.gh

Continue Reading

Sports

President Akufo-Addo orders Asamoah Gyan to rescind retirement decision

Published

on

President Akufo-Addo orders Asamoah Gyan to rescind retirement decision

President Akufo-Addo orders Asamoah Gyan to rescind retirement decision

Ghana leader Nana Akufo Addo has ordered former national team captain Asamoah Gyan to rescind his decision retirement from international football.

The president of the West African country made the order when he spoke to the iconic striker on Tuesday evening just one day after he quit the national team in anger.

Gyan quit on Monday just weeks before the Africa Nations Cup sparking a huge national debate and disquiet in many quarters.

Gyan said his decision had been taken as a way to protest a plan by coach Kwesi Appiah to deny him the opportunity of captaining the Black Stars in next month’s Africa Nations Cup in Egypt.

But President Akufo Addo who is keen on helping the Black Stars win the title spoke to the Turkey-based player and urged him to reconsider his decision.

President Akufo-Addo, subsequently, also spoke on the telephone with Asamoah Gyan, and informed him of the considerable national disquiet over his decision to retire from the Black Stars,” the spokesman for the Ghana President, Eugene Arhin wrote in a statement on Tuesday night.

“The President urged him, in the national interest, to rescind his decision to retire from the Black Stars, and make himself available for selection by Coach Kwasi Appiah.”

Gyan retired just ahead of the Africa Nations Cup which kicks off on June 21.

The Black Stars are in Group F with Cameroon, Benin and Guinea-Bissau.

Gyan made his international debut at the age of 17 against Somalia in 2003.

He is Ghana’s all-time goal scorer in the national team with 51 goals in his 106 appearances.

He has also featured in three World Cups — 2006, 2010 and 2014.

Source: GHANAsoccernet.com

Continue Reading

Trending