By Shaun Fuentes
President of the Asian Confederation and Sepp Blatter’s rival in the upcoming FIFA Presidential elections Mohammed Bin Hammam will arrive in Port of Spain, Trinidad on Monday to deliver a presentation to top officials of CONCACAF and the Caribbean Football Union the next day.
Reports indicate the Bin Hammam was forced to put off an originally scheduled meeting at the CONCACAF Congress in Miami last week due to visa issues and now he will get his chance to impress the bosses of the CONCACAF at the Hyatt Regency from 10am on Tuesday.
It is in the interest of fair play, one the founding principles of the world’s most popular sport, that CONCACAF President Jack Warner has delayed an announcement as to who his Confederation will be supporting at the upcoming FIFA presidential election.
Warner says the meeting has been arranged to allow his members to “hear both sides”. “No one in CONCACAF has expressed displeasure over Mr Blatter’s tenure but in the interest of fair play and democracy I cannot deny my membership the opportunity to hear all sides of this campaign. An election is not a popularity contest and as the world still grapples with shifting economic realities we must ensure that our sport is in a position to withstand any uncertainty,’ Warner said on Friday.
The FIFA Vice President, who is also the Minister of Works and Transport in his native Trinidad, added that in addition to the financial realities, one must always be mindful of the human side of the sport. It is a universally accepted rule that football is a global sport, a sport with no barriers and no discrimination.
“One must examine all that is proposed; how do you expand football? How do you continue to touch the lives of those who have been denied the opportunity to witness the beauty and simplicity of this game? “
Bin Hammam is expected to deliver a two-hour presentation to over 80 delegates of the region.
CONCACAF controls 35 votes in the FIFA election, which is scheduled to take place on June 1st in Zurich. The CONCACAF President has emphatically stated that his federation will vote as a bloc and a decision as to which of the candidates will be getting their nod will be made when CONCACAF meets next on May 30th in Zurich.