Liberia’s Musa Bility plans to stand for FIFA presidency

Musa Bility

The chairman of the Liberia Football Association, Musa Bility has announced plans to stand for the presidency of FIFA.

The 48-year-old is the second person to declare his candidacy for the role – after former Brazil international Zico- following Sepp Blatter’s decision to step down amid allegations of corruption among FIFA officials.

Bility is quoted by BBC Sport as saying: “Africa is the largest voting bloc in FIFA and we must take the lead to bring football together.

“But I don’t want to come across as an Africa candidate. I am running as a candidate of the world. I am running as a candidate of football.”

“We all agree that football is facing a difficult moment and it is in difficult moments that great leaders emerge.”

The 48-year-old Bility recognizes that the big challenge for soccer leaders is to “regain the confidence of football fans.”

FIFA has called an extraordinary meeting of its Executive Committee for July, when the date for the presidential elections will be decided.

FIFA presidential candidates must be nominated by at least five of the 209 FIFA member associations and pass integrity checks to get on the ballot. Bility said he already has a “commitment from many countries” to endorse him.

Bility has previously been an outspoken critic of the 68-year-old Hayatou, the FIFA senior vice president who has been considered the continent’s most obvious candidate to run for the presidency but is yet to announce his plans.

Meanwhile Fifa’s beleaguered president Sepp Blatter who will step down as president in December and his deputy Jérôme Valcke have both hired expensive US lawyers as the corruption scandal engulfing world football’s governing body continues to deepen.

Blatter is reported to have hired Richard Cullen, a former federal prosecutor.

Valcke, Fifa’s secretary general, who is alleged to have authorised a $10m bribe paid by South African football officials to Jack Warner, the disgraced former head of North American and Caribbean football, has hired prominent New York defense lawyer Barry Berke.

Neither has been charged, accused or even questioned in either of the two separate investigations under way into fraud and money-laundering at Fifa and its continental confederations.