Ahmad Ahmad, the embattled president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), has been banned by FIFA for five years over financial misappropriation.
Ahmad, who is also a vice-president of FIFA, was banned from all football-related activity on Monday.
The 60-year-old former government official in Madagascar was also fined 200,000 Swiss francs ($220,000).
In a statement, the FIFA ethics committee said it found that “Ahmad had breached his duty of loyalty, offered gifts and other benefits, mismanaged funds and abused his position as the CAF President.”
“Consequently, the adjudicatory chamber found that Mr Ahmad had breached arts 15, 20 and 25 of the current edition of the FIFA Code of Ethics, as well as art. 28 of the 2018 edition, and sanctioned him with a ban from all football-related activity (administrative, sports or any other) at both national and international level for five years,” the statement added.
“The terms of the decision were notified to Mr Ahmad today, the date on which the ban comes into force. In accordance with art. 78 par. 2 of the FIFA Code of Ethics, the full, motivated decision will be notified to Mr Ahmad in the next 60 days.
“The investigation into Mr Ahmad’s conduct in his position as CAF President during the period from 2017 to 2019 concerned various CAF-related governance issues, including the organisation and financing of an Umrah pilgrimage to Mecca, his involvement in CAF’s dealings with the sports equipment company Tactical Steel and other activities.”
Prior to the ban, Ahmad had indicated interest to retain the top seat of African football.
His first four-year term was, however, enmeshed with allegations of financial wrongdoing and misconduct at the confederation.
The CAF election is expected to hold on March 12 in Rabat, Morocco.