Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
The President of the German Football Association (DFB), Wolfgang Niersbach, has once again denied allegations that the committee behind the bid to host the 2006 World Cup had set up a slush fund to pay bribes to FIFA officials. According to the AFP, Niersbach claimed that a reported €6.7 million payment to FIFA in 2005 was in fact part of a financing agreement with FIFA by tournament organisers to secure ‘organisational support’ in grants of up to €170 million.
Niersbach reportedly did however acknowledge that there were still many unanswered questions. According to Reuters, he said that he was ‘not able to answer’ why the decisions about the multi-million payments were conducted privately, and without Niersbach’s knowledge, between FIFA President Sepp Blatter and Germany’s Franz Beckenbauer.
FIFA has reportedly responded to Niersbach’s comments in a statement saying, ‘That the financial support of FIFA World Cup Organising Committees should be coupled to any kind of financial advance payment by the respective organising committee or the relevant football association in no way corresponds to FIFA’s standard processes and regulations.
‘Furthermore, in general the FIFA finance committee is not authorised to receive payments in any way, nor does it have its own bank account.’ According to FIFA, the allegations are now under ‘review as part of the internal investigation being conducted by FIFA with its outside counsel.’
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