FIFA’s independent Ethics Committee believes that football’s global governing body needs to allow it to be more transparent with its investigations.
Cornel Borbely, chairman of the FIFA Ethics Committee’s investigatory chamber, suggests that the Committee should be allowed to make public its investigations and publish the reasons for its findings in line with how criminal proceedings are dealt with.
“As it stands, the FIFA Code of Ethics prevents the names of accused parties within an investigation from being disclosed upon request,” he said in a statement on FIFA’s official website.
“This is inconsistent with state criminal proceedings in Switzerland and Europe, which would provide significantly greater transparency.
“Transparency should be accorded greater importance in the future when weighing up the protection of privacy against disclosure.”
Hans-Joachim Eckert, the chairman of the Ethics Committee’s adjudicatory chamber, believes the Committee must be allowed to immediately justify its decisions to prevent misreporting of its decisions.
“This should be regardless of whether or not the football official in question is appealing the decision,” he said. “Where there has been public misinformation, the Ethics Committee must also have the right to offer rectification.”
The statement added: “The two chairmen are advocating the following, in accordance with and within the framework of their capabilities:
“1. In important cases, the Ethics Committee may provide information regarding ongoing proceedings.
“2. Where it is in the public interest, the Ethics Committee may confirm the existence of ongoing proceedings upon request.
“3. The Ethics Committee will publicly justify the decisions it takes immediately, regardless of whether or not the football official in question is appealing the decision.
“4. Where there has been public misinformation, the Ethics Committee may offer rectification.”
The Ethics Committee received plenty of criticism for not publishing a report by former investigatory chamber chairman, Michael Garcia, into corruption claims for the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups.