Blatter disgraced FIFA, says former vice-president

FIFA’s former vice-president Jack Warner questions why there are no investigations against Blatter.

FIFA Executive Committee meeting in Zurich
Blatter is yet to be questioned by the FBI or the Swiss authorities [EPA]

No one brought more shame on FIFA than its president Sepp Blatter and he should step aside for a younger leader, the organisation’s former vice-president Jack Warner has said.

Warner, who has been accused of soliciting bribes as part of a US-led corruption case against senior FIFA officials, left jail in Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday after he was granted bail, according to local media.

“Why are there no investigations in Asia, or in Europe?” Warner told German magazine Stern.

Why are there no investigations into Sepp Blatter? No other person has brought so much shame and disgrace on FIFA

Jack Warner, Former FIFA vice-president

“Why are there no investigations into Sepp Blatter? No other person has brought so much shame and disgrace on FIFA.”

Warner is among nine FIFA officials and five corporate executives charged by the U.S. Department of Justice with running a criminal enterprise that involved more than $150m in bribes.

“I only know this: he was elected FIFA boss five times in succession. Is he corrupt? I don’t know.

“If I were his age… I’d retire and pass the presidency of FIFA on to someone younger. But everyone has different ideas of what to do with their lives.”

Once one of the most powerful men in FIFA, Warner surrendered to authorities on Wednesday after US officials sought his extradition.

Prosecutors say Warner solicited bribes worth $10m from the South African government for them to host the 2010 World Cup and diverted bribes for personal use.

South Africa, meanwhile, have confirmed a payment was made but denied it was a bribe.

Twelve charges against Warner

Warner issued a statement protesting his innocence on Wednesday as FIFA reeled from police raids in Switzerland and the U.S. and a second investigation opened by the Swiss authorities into the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Warner, who faces 12 charges, including racketeering and bribery, said on Wednesday he was innocent and noted he had left football activities four years ago.

The 72-year-old resigned from FIFA after ethics investigations were begun into a meeting he held with former Asian Football Confederation chief Mohammed Bin Hammam where payments were made to Caribbean soccer officials ahead of the election for FIFA president in 2011.

Source: News Agencies