The top-most seat of football administration in Africa remains in Southern Africa as South Africa’s Patrice Motsepe has emerged President-elect ahead of the elections slated for March 12 in Rabat, Morocco.
The South African billionaire’s emergence is as a result of the pulling out of the other three West African challengers.
He thus becomes the seventh substantive head of CAF since Abdelaziz Abdallah Salem, the Egyptian founding president in 1957.
Pensioners’ FM recalls that as per Art. 18 Para. 11, Motsepe is returned unopposed, the relevant aspect of the Statues says: “In any case, where there is a single candidate, he is elected unopposed by acclamation”.
The latest presidential candidate to pull out is Jacques Anouma of Cote d’Ivoire, before him, Senegal’s Augustin Senghor and Mauritania’s Ahmed Yahya both pulled out.
Even Nigeria’s Amaju Pinnick who initially dropped hints of contesting in the presidential race backed out and backed Motsepe.
Anouma has now joined the train of contestants that pulled out, speaking in a television programme in Cote d’Ivoire on Friday, he remarked: “After several reflections and consultations, I decided to give up my candidacy for the election to the presidency of CAF”.
On Saturday, Anouma, and fellow candidates Augustin Senghor (Senegal) and Ahmed Yahya (Mauritania) are to sign an agreement in Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania in the presence of FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
They will agree to give up their bids in exchange for the post of advisor and two vice-presidents respectively.
The Rabat election next week is Anouma’s last opportunity of being a CAF Executive Committee member as he would no longer be eligible on account of age.
Pensioners’ FM recalls that Anouma, born 11 December 1951, will be 70 later this year, Art. 18, paragraph 9 of CAF Statues states: “At the time of their election, all candidates nominated to the Presidency and CAF Executive Committee must be “Bona Fide” members of their National Associations and shall not exceed the age of 70 years”.
He had unsuccessfully attempted to challenge Issa Hayatou in the 2012 CAF elections where he was disqualified.