Leaders of African football will meet on March 16th in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to elect, the ones to take up leadership positions within CAF for the period of 2017-2021, including that of the presidency.
For his longevity as the head of CAF, He could be referred to as the “Mugabe” of the African football. Issa Hayatou, president since 1988 (29 years now) still believes he can make a positive impact on football at the continental level.
Certainly, he is not the only one to have this conviction but a lot of people think rather of the contrary. Among them, his rival Ahmad Ahmad, president of the Malagasy football association.
Although the vote is secret, the new trend of associations making openly their choice and backing their preferred candidate well before the day of the voting has not changed. The COSAFA, Council of Southern Africa Football Associations declared their support for Ahmad.
The Malagasy football administrator, whose application initially generated derisory reactions with regards to his lack of popularity and experience asserts that there are lots of other sports and political personalities who are throwing their support behind him but prefer to keep it on the low.
Under Hayatou, the number of participating nations in the Africa Cup of Nations has increased to 16, new competitions were introduced such as the Championship of African Nations, and Africa organized for the first time a senior men’s world cup plus had more representatives (5 today) in there. Although these realizations are laudable ones, certain key actors maintain that it’s high time another person with new ideas contributed to the progress of football in Africa.
Ahmad Ahmad can thus be optimistic and hopeful that the vote will go his way.
Besides the presidency, 13 positions are to be filled in the CAF executive committee.