“I think many things have to change in African football”, Ahmad Ahmad a man on quest to unseat the current CAF President Issa Hayatou at the helm of African football.
“We need change in refereeing, officiating, the way we train our coaches. We can’t organise a coaching licence course in 15, 10 days. The certificate is just to help you get a work. Our technical development must change”
In what promises to be tightly contested CAF election, that will pit Ahamd Ahmad Head Of Madagascar and African football blue-blood Issa Hayatou the incumbent CAF president in modern times. This battle will surely ignite some sparks throughout the Ethiopian capital city Addis Ababa on March 16, and send shockwaves to the football fraternity across the globe no matter the outcome.
Issa Hayatou, a Cameroonian national has been at the helm of African football since 1987. Issa’s campaign to cling onto power experienced more pitfalls than any notable successes. He’s faced with a mammoth task to try and convince the masses of African faithful’s, that he still has the girth to take Africa football to the Promised Land. However it seems as if the once feared figure in African football is losing his tight grip at the top, whilst his peers are running for cover by not wanting to be on the wrong side of history.
Notably his fellow countrymen the legendary footballer Samuel Eto’o Fils has also raised his voice for changes at CAF.
“No institution resists the laws of cycles and change. I just hope that these changes will help African football to evolve, because it is the most important,” said Eto’o
“The development of CAN has improved infrastructure, and that is important. But the main beneficiaries of these changes must be players, especially those in Africa.
“The Caf is at a certain level of financial income. It is respected, within FIFA for example.”
To make matters worse even Cameroon President Paul Biya spurned an opportunity to link up with Hayatou in a bid to get support ahead of the polls. Hayatou is against the ropes even his trusted cadres from the Francophone faction cannot guarantee him success. COSAFA which commonly represents a lot of FA’s under the Anglophone umbrella have come out to support Ahmed Ahmed as a voice for change to take over CAF.
CAF leadership under the stewardship of Issa Hayatou have overstayed their welcome, and there’s a serious need of a new vibrant voice of change. Ahmad promises to be that innovator the African football fraternity are looking for to steer the ship. Even though Madagascar is not a great footballing nation, and haven’t featured much in major African tournaments such as Champions League and Afcon, they remain a force to be reckoned with in terms of football administration.
Our dear friend FIFA president Gianni Infantino seems to fiddling around in this hotly contested battle, he made no bone of revealing his preferred candidate going into this election. It’s all about change, we want change whispered Gianni. I can safely say Hayatou’s fate seemed to written all over the walls within FIFA’s House in Zurich.
As the head of FIFA, Gianni Infantino is on a warpath in a bid to clean off the sport, of course this formed a key part of his manifesto to assume office. Getting rid of Hayatou is surely the last great coup in his quest to clean up football, and also putting a final nail in the coffin of the FIFA old boys club comprised of Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini. The persistence association with ISL bribery allegations hanging over Hayatou’s head will not in no way assist him to extend the 30 year old regime for another term.
CAF is at a cross-road with a daunting task of choosing and betting on the right horse to win the coveted race. At this point it looks certain that Ahmad is going to walk away it, on the same wavelength Issa Hayatou will not go down without a fight, and football is all what he knows. This is the man who got schooled on matters of football politics and its manoeuvrings by the late former FIFA Honorary President Joao Havelange and the charismatic Sepp Blatter.
Is it the end of the road for Hayatou? I say write him off at your own peril.
Be that as it may CAF is heading for the much needed change.