Africa backs Infantino

African football associations have agreed to support Fifa president Gianni Infantino in his re-election bid next year, following a meeting of the zonal unions of Caf and the Caribbean held in Cairo, Egypt, on Tuesday this week.

BY HENRY MHARA

The meeting, which brought together all member associations from the continent, agreed to back the candidacy of Infantino.

The Caribbean Football Union, which has 25 member associations, also threw its weight behind the incumbent.

In a joint statement, the member associations said they were happy with Infantino’s leadership.

“The zonal union presidents voice their sincere thanks to Fifa president Infantino for his foresight in the critical role played by the zonal unions in the development of football on the continent and, therefore, the need by Fifa to assist the zonal unions in their common goal which is assisting their respective member associations to develop both on and off the field of play through competitions and educational courses.

“To his credit, during his campaign ahead of his election in 2016, Gianni Infantino came, saw and conquered the challenges of the zonal unions and included his intention to support not only the national associations, but also the zonal unions, included this in his manifesto and carried out his commitment.

“Through his invaluable commitment to the value of $1 million per annum, the use of which is properly monitored by the competent organ of Fifa, the zonal unions have been and continue for the foreseeable future to be in a position to organise women’s and youth competitions as well as educational, capacity-building course.

“With that in mind, the African and Caribbean zonal union presidents are honoured to commit their support to Fifa president Gianni Infantino in his 2019 campaign.”

In past elections, an official endorsement has previously proven no guarantee of votes with many African associations breaking ranks.

Infantino announced in June he would run for re-election as head of football’s world governing body when elections are held in Paris, France, in June 2019.

No other candidate has yet declared an interest to stand against Infantino.