Michel Platini offers to help FIFA ethics committee "clear up" payment probe

FIFA presidential candidate Michel Platini said on Monday he has offered to speak to FIFA`s Ethics Committee to help resolve any issues relating to the 2011 payment of 2 million Swiss francs ($2.1 million) that he received from world soccer`s governing body.

Reuters| Updated: Sep 28, 2015, 23:04 PM IST
Michel Platini offers to help FIFA ethics committee "clear up" payment probe

Zurich: FIFA presidential candidate Michel Platini said on Monday he has offered to speak to FIFA`s Ethics Committee to help resolve any issues relating to the 2011 payment of 2 million Swiss francs ($2.1 million) that he received from world soccer`s governing body.

The cash, which UEFA president Platini says was part of a payment for a "full time job" he had at FIFA, was referred to as a "disloyal payment" by Swiss prosecutors on Friday when they announced they were starting criminal proceedings against FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

In a letter to UEFA`s member associations, Platini repeated that he had "not been accused of any wrongdoing" by authorities and said that the payment was proper.

"I wish to clarify that for the period 1998 to 2002, I was employed by FIFA to work on a wide range of matters relating to football," the Frenchman wrote.

"It was a full-time job and my functions were known by all. The remuneration was agreed at the time and after initial payments were made, the final outstanding amount of 2 million Swiss Francs was paid in February of 2011.

"This income has all been fully declared by me to the authorities, in accordance with Swiss law," he added.

Platini was interviewed by Swiss prosecutors on Friday - on the same day as Blatter faced questions from the Office of the Attorney General. Blatter says he has done nothing illegal or improper.

Platini, a former Juventus and France international midfielder, said his status in those interviews with authorities was "not as a person accused of any wrongdoing but simply in my capacity as a person providing information".

The 60-year-old Platini did not address why the payment came nine years after he finished the work with FIFA but said he wants to clear his name swiftly.

"I have today written to the Ethics Committee of FIFA to request that I may come forward and provide whatever additional information may be needed in order to clear this matter up," he said.

"I am aware that these events may harm my image and my reputation and by consequence, the image of UEFA."

"For these reasons I wish to use all my energies to ensure that any issues or misunderstandings can be resolved as soon as possible," he said.