Almamy Kabele Camara of Guinea has been elected unopposed to the FIFA Council a week before the scheduled African elections.
This is after both his rivals, including SAFA president Danny Jordaan, pulled out just hours before FIFA announced the results of integrity checks into prospective candidates.
Camara will fill one of the seven seats reserved for Africa on the all-powerful cabinet of world football’s governing body. Lydia Nsekere of Burundi is guaranteed another as the continent’s female representative on the Council and the other five will be determined at elections at the Confederation of African Football’s congress in Addis Ababa on March 16.
Camara was one of three candidates for two places in the open category of the African elections, which also have other categories for the continent’s various language groups.
Both Jordaan and Chabur Goc Alei of South Sudan were also in the open category but have withdrawn, leaving a vacancy that will dictate the holding of a future supplementary election, officials confirmed on Tuesday.
The withdrawals are unexplained, particularly as if either had stayed in the race, they too would been elected unopposed to the FIFA Council. Attempts to contact both on Tuesday were unsuccessful.
The withdrawals were communicated to CAF and FIFA on Monday just hours before FIFA announced that the remaining 10 candidates in the race had all passed integrity checks.
Former African Footballer of the Year Kalusha Bwalya had already pulled out at the weekend as feverish campaigning ahead of the most animated CAF election in decades continues.
Long standing CAF president Issa Hayatou faces a challenge from Madagascar’s Ahmad, who uses just one name, for the organisation’s presidency and an automatic place on the FIFA Council.
Africa’s other FIFA Council seats will be determined by races in three language categories – Arabic, English and French. There are two candidates battling for a single place from each category.