Mamelodi Sundowns owner Patrice Motsepe to run for CAF president

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Patrice Motsepe, founder and chairman of African Rainbow Minerals Ltd., listens during the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., on Tuesday, April 30, 2019. The conference brings together leaders in business, government, technology, philanthropy, academia, and the media to discuss actionable and collaborative solutions to some of the most important questions of our time. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images
FILE PHOTO: Patrice Motsepe, owner of South African football club Mamelodi Sundowns. (Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Mamelodi Sundowns owner Patrice Motsepe will run for CAF president in next year’s election, the South African Football Association (SAFA) confirmed.

SAFA President Danny Jordaan announced Motsepe’s nomination during a press conference on Monday which was also attended by South African Sports minister Nathi Mthethwa.

Jordaan said Motsepe was a “revolutionary choice” for the leadership of African football given his numerous qualities, including his business acumen, legal training and observance of governance.

“Our nomination of Dr. Patrice Motsepe moves him from the boardroom to the dressing room. But, also, we understand that in order for the dressing room to be better, to get better, you must strengthen your relationship with the boardroom; and he is a person that has straddled both the boardroom and the dressing room and we think that he is the most appropriate person that we could offer for the leadership of CAF,” Jordaan said.

Jordaan also outlined Motsepe’s areas of focus for the advancement of the continental game: growth of women’s football, introduction of technology and innovation, reduction of the financial disparities, strengthening the continental zonal federations and strengthening governance and ethics.

Nigeria, Botswana and Sierra Leone have already endorsed Motsepe’s candidature, according to Mthethwa, who said it was “possible” to persuade other countries to back their candidate.

Motsepe, who has overseen great success at club level with Sundowns, will face off against incumbent Ahmad Ahmad and Côte d’Ivoire’s Jacques Anouma.

Ahmad confirmed his candidacy late last month ending months of speculation over his participation in the contest.

Ivory Coast’s Football Federation (FIF) announced its support for Anouma, a former member of FIFA’s executive board, on Saturday evening.

The deadline for individuals wishing to submit their candidacy for the position is November 12.

CAF will hold its presidential election in March next year in Rabat, Morocco.

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