FILE - Patrice Motsepe. Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
FILE - Patrice Motsepe. Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

No one better than Patrice Motsepe for CAF presidency, says Benni McCarthy

By Mihlali Baleka Time of article published Mar 11, 2021

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JOHANNESBURG - Benni McCarthy says Patrice Motsepe’s “honesty and integrity” will make him a great Confederation of African Football president.

Mamelodi Sundowns owner Motsepe is set to be officially unveiled as the new leader of CAF in Rabat, Morocco, tomorrow, after Fifa decided to “stage-manage” the elections in the interest of African football.

“He is a man of integrity and honesty, and that’s what we need. He’s going to make a big change to African football. He’s got the backing of everyone. If you ask me, I don’t think there’s a better candidate at the moment to lead Caf than Dr Patrice Motsepe,” McCarthy said.

“I think it’s about time a southern African nominee gets elected for the big post on the continent.

“I think Dr Motsepe has also done amazing work at Sundowns.”

Motsepe’s initial challengers – Jacques Anouma of Ivory Coast, Senegalese Augustin Senghor and

Mauritania’s Ahmed Yahya – have all withdrawn from the running and are backing the South African billionaire for the hot seat instead.

Motsepe, as the president of African football, will have his work cut out for him, starting with cleaning the image of the organisation which has been tainted by the scandalous dealings of his predecessors, Cameroonian Issa Hayatou and outgoing Madagascan Ahmad Ahmad.

The duo were reported to have run the organisation as their personal fiefdom between their reigns of 33 years.

Hayatou, who led for 29 years, was accused of accepting a bribe to vote for Qatar as host of the 2022 World Cup late in 2010.

In 2011, the nwo 74-year-old was reprimanded by the IOC over the huge sum of money he received from scandal-tainted sports marketing company ISL for broadcasting rights in 1995.

His replacement Ahmad is facing a two-year suspension from football by the Court of Arbitration for Sport after he was found guilty of violating the code of ethics, including the dispensing of gifts and misappropriate use of funds.

Motsepe, a lawyer by profession and businessman, has indicated that his decision to agree to run for the CAF presidency was and is not about money but for the betterment of football.

“With the humanitarian he is and the money that he has provided for the people that are far less fortunate – all the charities that he sponsors and the good work that he does not just in South Africa but on the continent – speaks volumes,” McCarthy said.

Motsepe’s love for football blossomed through his club Sundowns. The mining mogul has ensured that the Brazilians are well off and resourced, becoming the first team to win 10 Premiership titles.

Sundowns also conquered Africa, winning the Champions League in 2016 and Super Cup in 2017. Those heroics under coach Pitso Mosimane ensured that they played in their maiden Club World Cup.

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