Fifa bans top Qatari football official

Fifa’s ethics tribunal on Wednesday banned top Qatari and Asia football official Saoud al-Mohannadi for one year for refusing to help in an investigation.

Al-Mohannadi is vice-president of the 2022 World Cup host nation’s football association and had wanted to run for an Asian Football Confederatioin vice president’s position this year as a first step to getting into Fifa.

The Qatari official was also fined 20 000 Swiss francs ($19 900). But the ban from all football activities handed out by the Fifa’s ethics watchdog’s adjudicatory chamber was less than the 30-month ban originally requested.

Al-Mohannadi was punished for refusing to cooperate with a corruption inquiry.

Al-Mohannadi infringed “his duty to collaborate as a witness in separate proceedings,” a Fifa statement explained.

Fifa did not specify the target of the inquiry, but it was not connected with allegations related to Qatar’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup.

Mohannadi, who has denied any wrongdoing, was barred by Fifa from standing as an Asian Football Confederation delegate to the Fifa Council at an AFC Congress last month.

In protest the congress, attended by Fifa president Gianni Infantino at a luxury hotel in Goa, India, last month came to a premature end minutes after it opened as members protested at Al-Mohannadi’s exclusion.

© AFP

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