FIFA suspends two Exco members over vote-selling

Zurich: Two members of the FIFA executive committee linked to allegations of vote-selling for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup decision have been provisionally suspended, soccer`s governing body announced on Wednesday.

Claudio Sulser, head of FIFA`s ethics committee, told a news conference said that Oceania Football Confederation president Reynald Tamarii, a former professional player for French club Nantes, and Nigeria`s Amos Adamu had been suspended from any football-related activity for 30 days.

Sulser is investigating allegations in the Sunday Times that the pair offered to sell their votes for the Dec. 2 election when FIFA`s 24-man executive committee will vote for the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

He said that a final decision would be taken in mid-November.

Sulser also announced that four more officials -- all former executive committee members -- had been suspended "in relation to an alleged breach of the FIFA statutes, the FIFA code of ethics and the FIFA disciplinary code linked to the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups".

An investigation has also been opened into allegations that two bidding countries had entered into alleged agreements which would breach the rules and code of ethics.

They were named as Slim Aloulou (Tunisia), Amadou Diakite (Mali), Ahongalu Fusimalohi (Tonga) and Ismael Bhamjee (Botswana).

England and Russia are bidding to host the 2018 World Cup along with joint bids from Spain/Portugal while Japan, South Korea, Qatar, United States and Australia are candidates for 2022.

"I was surprised that you asked if FIFA was corrupt," said FIFA president Sepp Blatter at the end of the news conference.

"FIFA is a well recognised organisation and institution."

He conceded, however, that his was a "sad day for football" but vowed that confidence would be restored by FIFA.

Bureau Report