Barbados speedy response could save it from FIFA sanctions – BFA

(Barbados Nation) Barbados’ speedy response to an ultimatum from FIFA, the world governing body, could allow it to escape without any sanctions.

General Secretary of the Barbados Football Association (BFA) David Hinds revealed yesterday that FIFA had confirmed receipt of their correspondence which was sent on Tuesday.

FIFA had given all the Caribbean football associations a 48-hour deadline to “provide and report all relevant information in their possession” about a May 10 to 11 meeting in Trinidad and Tobago with former Asian Football Confederation chief and ex-presidential candidate Mohamed bin Hammam of Qatar.

The world governing body had also warned that “any person who has relevant information but does not come forward during this 48-hour period will be subject to the full range of sanctions.”

But Hinds was upbeat and confident when he spoke with NATIONSPORT yesterday.

“FIFA has acknowledged receipt of the information which we sent, thanking the BFA for the prompt response in this matter,” Hinds said.

“So we are just waiting to hear from them what the next step is,” he added.

Hinds and former long-serving FIFA referee Mark “Bob” Forde were Barbados’ delegates at the controversial meeting where it was alleged bin Hammam offered bribes of US$40 000 to each regional association to vote for him to become FIFA’s president, unseating the long-standing Sepp Blatter.

FIFA’s warning came days after bin Hammam, who had subsequently withdrew from the presidential battle, was found guilty of breaking seven articles of FIFA’s ethics code, including bribery and was banned from football-related activities for life.

Whereas the two BFA officials have maintained their position that they were not offered bribes, officials from nine of the 30 associations, including The Bahamas, Puerto Rico and Suriname told FIFA investigators they were given or offered cash gifts at the same meeting.

CFU officials Debbie Minguell and Jason Sylvester were also given one-year bans for their role at the meeting, but under FIFA statutes the investigation against former CONCACAF president and

FIFA vice-president Jack Warner, was dropped after he resigned last month.

Hinds also dismissed reports that he and Forde had refused to travel to The Bahamas to be interviewed by former FBI boss, Louis Freech and that FIFA had bought airline tickets to facilitate the said trip.

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