. Ahmad seeks support for ‘vast project of change’

The CAF Congress on Friday in Rabat, Morocco put a seal on a number of changes proposed at a two – day symposium on African Football and which the Executive Committee approved on Thursday.

The symposium that took place on Tuesday and Wednesday at the International Conference Centre in Skhirat, outside Rabat crystallized a plethora of ideas for the African game going forward, including a 24 –nation Africa Cup of Nations finals, expansion of the youth competitions from the current 8 –team finals, moving the AFCON to June/July and a more inclusive CAF alive to, and abreast with, the dictates of new realities.

On Friday, at the Extra-Ordinary General Assembly at the Sofitel Hotel and Resorts in Rabat, CAF President Ahmad called on the African football family to unite and approach the future with determination and conviction, and to afford CAF full support in “this vast project of change.”

He also indicated that the new administration would always insist on global best practice in service, attitude and application, and in evaluating the preparedness of host nations for CAF championships.

CAF 1st Vice President Kwesi Nyantakyi, who is Chairman of the Statutes Amendment Committee, rolled out the amendments to the Statutes, which was the major business of the day, while revealing that the Executive Committee approved the introduction of a third vice president, the expansion of the Executive Committee from 16 to 23 members, the abolition of the practice of persons wearing multiple hats and the reduction in the number of standing committees from 20 to 11.

“Henceforth, the CAF Executive Committee will comprise of a President, 13 members, one woman, the six members of the FIFA Council (apart from the CAF President) and two co-opted members. The co-opted members, at the pleasure of the President, will also enjoy the same rights (including voting right) as the elected members, just as the FIFA Council members.

“Persons can decide to either be in the FIFA Council or the CAF Executive Committee, but cannot be in both, except for the CAF President who is automatically a FIFA Vice President. The FIFA Council will be decided this way: 2 from the Francophone bloc, 2 from the Anglophone bloc, 2 from the Portuguese/Arabic/Spanish bloc and 1 woman, who can come from any of the blocs. However, the bloc that produces the CAF President can only produce one more person.”

Nyantakyi also declared that the eligibility checks would now be extended to persons vying for CAF Executive Committee membership, and not only those vying for the FIFA Council. The position of CAF’s head of administration will now be known as General Secretary, instead of Secretary General.

The standing committees have now been pruned to 11.

The Extra-Ordinary General Assembly approved the above and other amendments to the Statutes with a vote of 53-0. Tanzania was absent at the session, while Zanzibar, which was admitted as a Member at the CAF Congress in Ethiopia in March, was stripped of its status as it was decided that the territory remains part of the country known as Tanzania.

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