Warner walks away from football

Suspended CONCACAF president has investigations into him closed by FIFA as he steps down from all roles.

    FIFA said it "appreciated and acknowledged" Warner's contribution to football [AFP]

    Embattled FIFA vice-president Jack Warner has resigned from all his positions in international football, the world governing body confirmed on Monday.

    Warner, the influential 68-year-old head of the Caribbean, North and Central American Federation (CONCACAF), had been suspended last month pending an investigation into bribery allegations.

    "As a consequence of Mr Warner's resignation, all ethics committee procedures against him have been closed and the presumption of innocence is maintained," said a FIFA statement.

    Trinidadian Warner and Asian football chief Mohamed bin Hammam had been suspended after allegations that cash gifts of $40,000 were offered to the heads of CONCACAF's national associations in an attempt to topple FIFA president Sepp Blatter in an election earlier this month.

    Bin Hammam and Warner were targeted after Chuck Blazer, general secretary of CONCACAF, reported possible misdeeds during the May 10 and 11 conference in Trinidad.

    Blatter was unopposed and voted into a fourth term as president while Warner and bin Hammam were suspended while an investigation into the claims continued.

    Claims

    Blazer's allegations were preceded by claims of improper conduct made against Warner and three other FIFA executive committee members before a British parliamentary hearing earlier this year by the former head of England's failed 2018 World Cup bid, Lord Triesman.

    Triesman, who was also the former chairman of the English Football Association, accused Warner of asking for money to build an education centre at an estimated cost of $4 million.

    "FIFA regrets the turn of events that have led to Mr Warner's decision," FIFA said.

    "His resignation has been accepted by world football's governing body, and his contribution to international football and to Caribbean football in particular and the CONCACAF confederation are appreciated and acknowledged.

    "Mr Warner is leaving FIFA by his own volition after nearly 30 years of service, having chosen to focus on his important work on behalf of the people and government of Trinidad and Tobago as a Cabinet Minister and as the Chairman of the United National Congress, the major party in his country's coalition government."

    SOURCE: AFP


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