Singapore: Oceania’s acting soccer president David Chung is to fly to Zurich on Monday in the hope FIFA will allow him to take part in the vote to select the 2018 and 2022 World Cup hosts.
The Papua New Guinean heads to the headquarters of world soccer’s governing body FIFA as acting president of the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) after Tahitian Reynald Temarii was suspended for a year.
A source close to the OFC told reporters on Monday that Temarii, who was banned this month by FIFA after it found he had breached general rules of ethics and loyalty, would not appeal against the ban which should open the door for Chung to vote in his place in Zurich.
However, Temarii’s lawyer Geraldine Lesieur said a decision had not yet been made on whether or not to appeal against the ban.
“I cannot confirm that Mr Temarii is not going to appeal the ban, simply because we are waiting for FIFA’s detailed explanations of the suspension,” she told Reuters by telephone.
“I sent a letter to FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke asking him for these explanations.”
The World Cup host nations will be selected on Thursday by FIFA’s executive committee members. If FIFA does allow Chung to replace the banned Temarii he would be the 23rd voting executive committee member.
England, Russia, Spain/Portugal and Belgium/Netherlands are bidding to host the 2018 World Cup with Japan, South Korea, Australia, Qatar and United States the candidates for 2022.
Temarii had been Oceania’s only representative on FIFA’s executive committee until his suspension from all soccer-related activity.
The OFC met in Auckland on Saturday and said it believed it had the right to replace Temarii for the remainder of his term.
When contacted by Reuters the OFC was unable to confirm that Temarii had decided not to appeal his ban, but did say Chung was heading to Zurich.