Blatter feels heat over bribery findings
FIFA president Sepp Blatter faced calls to resign over the findings of an ethics investigation into a bribery scandal involving leading football officials and collapsed marketing partner ISL.
Blatter's handling of the case was labelled "clumsy" but not misconduct by the investigation - though it questioned whether he knew or should have known about the millions of pounds of bribes paid to his predecessor Joao Havelange and two other South American FIFA members.
Havelange has resigned as FIFA's honorary president in the wake of the findings, it emerged on Tuesday, and Damian Collins, an MP who sits on the culture, media and sport select committee and who has led a campaign for FIFA reform, insists Blatter should follow suit.
Collins told the Press Association: "Sepp Blatter should himself resign for his failure to expose the wrongdoing sooner, and to take action earlier against those who had done wrong.
"In the light of this report, it is even more incredible that the FIFA executive committee continue to resist calls, from its own advisors, for greater independent scrutiny of its decisions, and the financial interests of its members.
"The impression created by this report is one of an attempted cover-up by FIFA of this massive corruption scandal motivated by the desire to protect some of its leading officials."
The long-awaited reported by FIFA's ethics committee into the ISL scandal named Havelange and two former FIFA members Ricardo Teixeira and Nicolas Leoz as receiving bribes. All three have since resigned from FIFA.
The report by FIFA Adjudicatory Chamber chairman Hans-Joachim Eckert states: "Mr Havelange has long held solely an honorary position, which does not qualify him as an 'official' under the code of ethics. Further, Mr Havelange resigned his position as honorary president effective 18.04.2013."
Eckert does question Blatter's role in the scandal, however.
He states: "It must be questioned, however, whether President Blatter knew or should have known over the years before the bankruptcy of ISL that ISL had made payments (bribes) to other FIFA officials."
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