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29 May 2015

Sepp Blatter re-elected as Fifa president amid corruption allegations

Re-elected for a fifth term even as his organisation is mired in a corruption scandal.

By New Statesman

Sepp Blatter has been re-elected as president of Fifa.

His challenger Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan withdrew after the first round of voting. Blatter had fallen seven votes short of the required two-thirds majority.

After seven Fifa officials were arrested in Switzerland as part of a US corruption prosecution, Blatter has faced calls to resign, including from David Cameron.

Writing for The Staggers yesterday, Keiran Pedley argued that it’s time for England to take action:

So what should we do about it? I think now is the time for the FA (and its partners in the football world) to demand action. Uefa have already asked that the upcoming Fifa Presidential elections be postponed but this is not enough. Until a full, independent, investigation into the 2018 and 2022 bids is completed and until we are satisfied migrant workers in Qatar are being treated fairly then the Qatar tournament (at least) should be put on hold. The English FA should threaten to boycott the World Cup in Qatar if this does not happen.

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Last year, NS editor Jason Cowley wrote a cover story entitled “the last World Cup”:

Even before the Sunday Times reported the extent of the alleged bribes and bungs used to win the vote for Qatar – such an eminently sensible choice, when you think about it, with its 50° summer temperatures and its hatred of homosexuals, alcohol and liberated women – the stench of corruption hung over Fifa. We should not forget that David (Lord) Triesman was forced to resign as chairman of the Football Association and of the England 2018 World Cup bid team for stating the obvious: the right to host the World Cup can be bought.