FIFA’s Executive Committee approved a comprehensive reforms plan on Thursday in an effort to improve the way the organization is run in the wake of recent corruption scandals.
The main reforms in the proposal, which was introduced by the 2016 FIFA Reform Committee, include term limits for the FIFA president and council members, integrity checks on officials by an independent committee and a statute focused on protecting human rights, among other planned changes.
The president of world soccer’s governing body will now be permitted to remain in office for a maximum of three four-year terms. President Sepp Blatter, who is currently serving a 90-day suspension resulting from an ongoing criminal investigation, has been in office for 17 years.
“These reforms are moving FIFA towards improved governance, greater transparency and more accountability,” acting FIFA president Issa Hayatou said in a statement. “They mark a milestone on our path towards restoring FIFA’s credibility as a modern, trusted and professional sports organisation. This signals the beginning of a culture shift at FIFA.”
The proposal will now need to be approved by the FIFA Congress, which will vote on the plan on Feb. 26, the same day the special election for president will be held.
FIFA reform chief Carrard: "FIFA is going through a major crisis ... a crisis is a unique opportunity for change & commencing a new period"— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) December 3, 2015
The approval of the reforms plan comes the same day Swiss officials conducted another round of arrests of FIFA officials. More than a dozen people are expected to be charged, including CONCACAF president Alfredo Hawit and CONMEBOL president Juan Angel Napout. Blatter was not arrested.
- Erin Flynn