First woman elected to FIFA's executive body

Burundi's Lydia Nsekera elected to serve full four-year term on executive committee of football's world governing body.

Last Modified: 31 May 2013 20:38
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Nsekera had also been the first woman to be coopted on for one year at last year's congress in Budapest [AFP]

Burundi's Lydia Nsekera has become the first woman to be elected to the FIFA Executive Committee (ExCo) for a full term.

Nsekera was voted to serve the four-year term at the FIFA Congress in Mauritius, while two other women, Moya Dodd of Australia and Sonia Bien-Aime of the Turks and Caicos Islands, were coopted on for one year.

Nsekera had also been the first woman to be coopted on for one year at last year's congress in Budapest.

Although the moves are seen as another step towards gender equality within football's world governing body, there is still work to be done as the ExCo comprises a total of 24 members.

"One woman was coopted on to the Executive Committee last year for one year, and now a woman has been officially elected on to the executive committee, with two others coopted," FIFA president Sepp Blatter said. "It has taken us 109 years to get this far."

World Cup voting

The congress also passed a proposal to change the process by which future World Cups are chosen was voted through by an overwhelming majority.

Previously, only the 24 members of the Executive Committee were allowed to vote for successful World Cup hosting, but now a collective vote will be taken by all 209 federations.

Out of 207 votes, 198 voted in favour of the change, with just two voting against.

The previous system came under fire after the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 finals to Russia and Qatar respectively.

Meanwhile, FIFA's decision to postpone introducing limits on the age and length of term for presidential candidates until at least 2014 has come in for criticism from Mark Pieth, the man hired by FIFA as their chief reformer.

"These are not the most fundamental reforms, but this does risk sending out a symbolic message," said Pieth, an independent Swiss lawyer.

In January, UEFA proposed a an age limit of 72 for officials standing for election and a maximum of three four-year mandates.

Blatter, 77, has already surpassed both those limits.


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