November 29 – Almost a year after French authorities handed leading African football administrator Patrice-Edouard Ngaissona over to the International Criminal Court in The Hague to face war crimes, FIFA have banned him for six years and eight months.
Ngaissona was president of the Central African Republic’s FA for more than a decade and was also a member of Confederation of African Football’s executive committee.
FIFA’s ethics judges found him a guilty of “discrimination and of failing to protect, respect or safeguard integrity and human dignity.” He was also fined CHF500,000.
Ngaissona, arrested in France on an ICC warrant, is suspected of war crimes in 2013 and 2014 as leader of the Christian anti-Balaka militia which targeted Muslims, about 190,000 of whom fled to neighbouring Cameroon and Chad.
In the period he was allegedly committing war crimes, he was a member of the FIFA panel organising the Club World Cup, having been appointed in 2017 to FIFA’s associations committee.
The move will heap even more embarrassment and ignominy on under-fire CAF leader Ahmad Ahmad in his effort to make African football more accountable and transparent.
In their written ruling, FIFA judges cited a number of war crimes including summary executions, torture, mutilation, sexual offences and destruction of mosques.
The full hard-hitting ethics committee ruling, detailing Ngaissona’s conduct, can be read here. It makes for pretty gruesome reading.
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