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Home » Sport » Football

Pieth outlines FIFA reforms

The FIFA president will be limited to a fixed term in office in the future if proposals by the world governing body's reform chief are accepted.

Mark Pieth, the criminology professor at the University of Basle appointed to chair FIFA's independent governance committee,also recommends time limits for FIFA members and for independent members to be appointed to the executive committee.

Pieth's report states: "Past experience has demonstrated that the risks linked to these highly visible and politically sensitive decisions are actually a mix of corruption risk and conflict of interest concerns."

He adds: "Suspicion that individuals either sold their vote or profiteered directly from the choice of venue is combined with allegations of a strategic use of development money in order to influence decision-takers of ExCo."

Pieth will not however investigate allegations of corruption involving World Cup bids or of wrongdoing by FIFA members but stick to making proposals for future reform - and he admits that some members will not like his plans for change.

He said he would walk away if he feels his reform proposals are not taken seriously. Pieth told a news conference in Zurich: "We are talking about serious stuff here. Not everyone will like this.

"I'm not too worried about it because to some extent this is a process. We are trying to change something, but of course there's a bottom line, if we are seriously unhappy I can say 'this is it I've had it'."

Pieth does believe that other people should look into allegations of corruption surrounding World Cup votes. He also recommends any payments by FIFA to member associations, their officials and people close to them need to have "close financial scrutiny".

Cash for development projects such as the GOAL programme, long seen as the source of FIFA money ending up in the wrong pockets, should be controlled from beginning to end to ensure it is spent correctly.

A "discrete disclosure channel" hotline to report corruption should also be made available, said Pieth, with FIFA officials subject to due diligence to establish whether they are suitable for office

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