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East Africa to back Hayatou in CAF presidency poll

NAIROBI, (Xinhua) -- East Africa will back the bid of the sitting Confederation of African Football (CAF) President Issa Hayatou to serve his eighth straight term at the forthcoming Electoral Congress in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Kenyan Nicholas Musonye, who is the Secretary General of the regional Council of East and Central Africa Football Associations (Cecafa), declared in Nairobi on Tuesday that they would back Cameroonian Hayatou, who has been in power since 1988.

The upcoming Congress has divided the continent with the incumbent, who is also a FIFA Vice-President, facing the sternest test to his rule from Mauritius FA head Ahmad Ahmad, who has the support of world governing body leader, Gianni Infantino.

“We have made it clear we will support a proven leader since we know what he has achieved for this region for the years he has been in power. We will not go for someone who has no record in football development,” Musonye asserted.

He claimed as a result of throwing their weight behind Hayatou, FIFA had resorted to intimidate some Cecafa members by opening disciplinary proceeding against 13 nations which make up the regional body.

Last week, FIFA opened the opportunity for sanctions against the nations that took part in the 2015 Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup.

“Why now? We have been running the Challenge Cup for decades and it’s only at this time that FIFA have found a problem with the event. These are the kind of things they are doing to intimidate some of our members into voting for their preferred candidate,” Musonye claimed.

“We all agreed we want Hayatou and that is clear,” the Cecafa boss charged.

On his part, Football Kenya Federation President, Nick Mwendwa, stated he would use his vote to elect a leader with the best interests of the country’s football.

“So far nothing has been sealed conclusively. I have been mandated to represent the will of football stakeholders in my country which I’m committed to.

“However, we consider goodwill and football development ideas,” Mwendwa was quoted on local website Citizen Digital.

The Council of Southern African Football Associations and some of the Western African States have already declared their support for Ahmad.



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