Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

My dearest readers ... If my dearly departed father had been a member of the National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS), I would have swiftly applied for a change of surname.
I wouldn’t be associated with an organisation that, if you want to go east, you have to suggest west. If you want bread, you have to ask for a stone.

Well, we have come to know the National Fumblers ... err Football Association of Eswatini as an organisation of flops, mismanagement and poor judgement but even by their low standards, the past week’s decision to vote for Morocco in the 2026 World Cup bid is a shocking aberration.
 As much as it seems a joke, we should not laugh off this latest gaffe by the football authorities. Instead we should be sad that people with such lack of foresight can be entrusted with administering the country’s most followed sport.
What were they thinking, really?

Thanks to FIFA’s decision, for the very first time, to make voting for the hosts of their crown jewel open. While all the 207 member countries of the organisation always enjoyed one vote each, it has traditionally been done by a secret ballot. Not this time around. In a bid to overcome previous scandals and reinvent itself, one of the reforms that the international football mother body came up with, in line with its transparency policies, was to have an open vote.

As a result, when each member went into the booth last week Wednesday, June 13, all those in the hall could see which country the individual voted for between Morocco and the united joint bid of US-Canada-Mexico. The US-Canada-Mexico joint bid won by 134 votes to Morocco’s paltry 65. In the past, during the secret ballot era, we wouldn’t have known who Eswatini voted for. But thanks to FIFA for making this voting process an open one with the results of which country voted for which bid coming out 30 minutes after the results.


In any case, our life-long FA President Adam ‘Bomber’ Mthethwa, who cast the vote, had long been coerced into what was termed an ‘African Bid’ by CAF President, Ahmad Ahmad.
Therein lies the rub.
It was the beginning of all the trouble we find ourselves in right now where the country has lost out on a massive, please say it after me, E640 million share the joint US-Canada-Mexico promised to each FIFA member association as share of profits for the 2026 World Cup. The US-Canada-Mexico bid had also placed a US$11 billion sweetener to FIFA while Morocco could only guarantee US$4 billion.

Where monetary terms are concerned, you do not need the wisdom of a Biblical Solomon to decide which makes financial sense between the two bids. In any case, this was bigger than the monetary benefits to the country. For crying out loud, the US-Canada-Mexico joint bid spent the whole weekend in Polokwane, the other week, trying to convince the 14 presidents of the Council of Southern African Football Associations (COSAFA) to throw their weight behind the North Americans.

Comments (0 posted):

Post your comment comment

Please enter the code you see in the image:

: Alcohol ban
Will the PM lift the alcohol ban on Thursday (October 1)?