FIFA’s 10 Commandments: Does Sepp Blatter honour them?
By Andrew Jennings
Thursday June 3, 2010
In turn hilarious and deadly serious, from the Pulpit to the Confessional, Andrew Jennings highlights the issues facing FIFA on the eve of the World Cup in South Africa. On its website FIFA lays out its values. But does it live up to them?
FIFA president Blatter talks of the ‘family of football.’ But it's his family, especially nephew Philippe Blatter, has done best out of the World Cup! And how Sepp Blatter apes the life-style of real-world presidents.
Yes indeed – FIFA congresses seem modelled on North Korea – or a Mafia family gathering – a celebration of the Dear Leader, or the Boss of Bosses. How Blatter’s ‘family’ ticks the boxes that define Organised Crime - and the money that lubricates the FIFA machine. The worries of football fans are never heard.
Fans judge FIFA’s performance on how fairly it distributes World Cup tickets. FIFA warns fans against the Black market – but the biggest ticket tout is a FIFA official!
What has Sepp Blatter done about courtroom revelations that officials grabbed around US$100 million in kickbacks on contracts?
From the pulpit Andrew asks, does FIFA believe in fair play? There is indisputable evidence of vote-rigging at FIFA congresses and dubious payments to FIFA officials that helped Germany win the vote to host the 2006 World Cup. And then there’s the blazer who a judge accused of ‘fabricating’ evidence!
FIFA talks the talk about being against racism and discrimination – but won’t take action against a senior FIFA official who denounced Jews as ‘lazy.’ And FIFA discriminates against poor street traders in South Africa – in favour of rich ‘partners’ like McDonalds.
Oh dear, were these World Cup games fixed? And look out reporters in South Africa, here comes the FIFA Thought Police.
Sepp Blatter in the confessional. If he wants absolution he must publish the minutes of committee meetings, reveal his salary, disclose the bonuses he pays himself. And he must set up an Independent FIFA Anti-Corruption Commission.
Is FIFA really for the Game?
Or is football only a vehicle to keep Sepp Blatter in endless power? And does he really have a ‘love affair’ with Africa? Or is it the continent’s votes that he craves?
Develop the Game?
That’s part of FIFA’s Mission Statement. But in South Africa it is vast stadiums, many of little use after the tournament, that are being developed, not grass roots facilities. The condition of some ‘sports’ grounds in the townships of the Cape are worse than those on the notorious Robben Island in the nearby bay.
A Nobel Peace prize for ‘Saint’ Joseph Blatter?
The fans don’t think so. In Korea they booed him at the Opening Ceremony and he avoided the awarding of the World Cup in Berlin in 2006, fearing more booing.
Director & Concept
Albert Knechtel for ARTE, June 2010