December 13 – Cameroon legend Samuel Eto’o has been elected the president of the Cameroon Football Federation (FECAFOOT) for a four-year term, defeating the incumbent Seidou Mbombo Njoya.
The four-time African Footballer of the Year defeated rival Njoya 43-31 in the elections to take control.
“We have to bring footballers to the centre of our policies,” said Eto’o. “It is our role to ensure that those who play this discipline make a decent living out of it.”
The new president has promised reform at a body that has long struggled with corruption and internal power struggles. World federation FIFA intervened several times to quell political infighting at FECAFOOT.
In 2017, FIFA set up a normalisation committee after “recent failed attempts by Fifa to reconcile the football stakeholders in Cameroon and overcome the current impasse”. Four years earlier, Zurich also stepped in to run day-to-day affairs at the Cameroonian governing body.
At first, the former Barcelona player had been barred from the elections on the basis of his dual nationality, but after his reentry five other candidates, including former internationals Maboang Kesack and Jules Denis Onana, withdrew and Eto’o faced off with the incumbent.
Eto’o’s election comes on the eve of the Africa Cup of Nations, which Cameroon will host in January and February. The country had been due to stage the continental finals in 2019, but was stripped of the hosting rights after concerns over hosting capacities. The tournament was shifted to Egypt. This will be the second edition in a 24-team format.
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