Special congress ends in jeers for Blatter

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Special congress called to examine FIFA's finances ended in booing and jeers.

Updated: February 25, 2007 09:27 IST
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A special congress called to examine FIFA's finances ended in booing and jeers today, as delegates opposed to Sepp Blatter's re-election as President of soccer's governing body claimed he deliberately ignored their questions. Blatter, who faces a vote tomorrow against African soccer head Issa Hayatou for FIFA's top job, was accused of allowing only national federations that support him to ask questions of the finance committee. Michel Zen-Ruffinen, FIFA general-secretary and Blatter's right-hand man until he was gagged earlier this month after making allegations of financial mismanagement and corruption against the president, described today's extraordinary congress as scandalous. Zen-Ruffinen, who declared at the start of the meeting he wouldn't fulfill his ceremonial duties of chairing the meeting or be held liable for a report on FIFA's finances that was presented to it, said he was "completely appalled" by Blatter's undemocratic actions. Blatter "took questions from associations solely on his own judgment," Zen-Ruffinen said. Blatter closed the extraordinary congress before delegates from 15 national associations, including England, Somalia, Tunisia and the Netherlands, had been given a chance to take the floor. (AP)

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