9/26/2016 4:25:48 AM

Qatar's Al Mohannadi stopped from contesting FIFA Council elections


DOHA: The game's world governing body has stopped Qatar's senior football official Saud Abdulaziz Al Mohannadi from standing in the elections to the new powerful FIFA Council.

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) will hold the elections in Goa, India, on Tuesday.

As part of its reforms, FIFA will replace its 24-member Executive Committee with a 36-member Council. Consequently, Asia which now has four representatives in the decision-making body, will have three more with one reserved for women.

Al Mohannadi, who is a vice-president of the AFC, was almost sure to win, and Doha Stadium Plus had learnt that he was set to leave for Goa after actively campaigning in the region and beyond. But FIFA, on Sunday, informed the AFC that the Qatari was not eligible to contest the election. FIFA shared the information with the AFC's Electoral Committee as well as the Asian body's all member associations.

The adjudicatory chamber of FIFA's Ethics Committee, under its Chairman Hans-Joachim Eckert, had recently opened formal proceedings against Al Mohannadi, based on the final report submitted by the investigatory chamber. A FIFA investigator had last month recommended Al Mohannadi be banned for two-and-a-half years over allegations of non-cooperation with an inquiry.

The Qatar Football Association had fully backed Al Mohannadi, who is its vice-president.

Zhang Jian (China), Ali Kafashian Naeni (Iran), and Zainudin Nordin (Singapore) as well as Moya Dodd (Australia), Mahfuza Ahkter (Bangladesh) and Han Un-Gyong (North Korea) will now contest the three available seats.

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