Tokyo Sexwale’s bid to become FIFA president has been dealt a blow after he failed to receive the initial support of the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
The South African is a contender to replace outgoing president Sepp Blatter, who remains suspended by FIFA over investigations into an alleged “disloyal payment” to UEFA counterpart Michel Platini – whose own bid is on hold after he was temporarily banned for his part.
Sexwale, a businessman and former political prisoner, is being backed by the South African Football Association and had hoped to earn the support of CAF, FIFA’s biggest confederation with 54 associations.
However, the CAF Executive Committee met in Cairo and subsequently stated that they will wait for the campaign process to take its course before publicly backing a candidate.
“The CAF Executive Committee at its meeting at the CAF headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, has taken note of submissions by candidates for the FIFA presidential election scheduled for 26 February 2016,” read a CAF statement.
“The meeting served the climax to the CAF annual meetings, and between 25 and 28 October 2015 audiences were granted to four declared candidates for the FIFA presidency. They are Sheikh Salman Bin Ibrahim Al-Khalifa, Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, Gianni Infantino and Tokyo Sexwale.
“After discussions with them, the CAF Executive Committee unanimously decided to leave the administrative procedures for the registration of candidates to take its course, while giving plenty of time to decide, with the interest of the continent the primary objective.”