(WFI) Corruption is associated once again with a prominent FIFA member.
His name is Constant Omari, a Congolese member of the FIFA Council, the body that replaced the former Executive Committee in a restructuring that followed a series of corruption scandals that rocked soccer’s governing body in 2015.
Omari was detained on Tuesday in Kinshasa and held for 24 hours in a public prosecutor’s office in his country as part of a probe into embezzlement.
He is also the vice president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) aside from being the president of the DR Congo Football Association.
“FIFA is closely following the matter and gathering additional information but has no further statement to make at this stage,” FIFA said in a statement about the case.
Omari was questioned along with the secretary-general of Congo’s Sports Ministry Barthelemy Okito and two football association vice-presidents, Roger Bondembe and Theobad Binamungu.
The four executives are accused of possible misuse of public funds earmarked to organize matches in African competitions involving national sides as well as clubs.
According to AFP, quoting the lawyer for the four men, Alain Makengo, the accusation the football executives face revolves specifically around the possible embezzlement of US $1 million destined for four matches. That money, according to the probe, was requested from the country’s sports ministry to pay for matches involving the DR Congo national side and club teams playing in African continental competitions.
For now, all activities for the football national league in the DR Congo have been suspended until further notice. According to its executives, the measure is “in solidarity” with all those who have been detained.
The arrest and questioning of the Congolese football executives was ordered by the Presidential Special Adviser in the fight against corruption, Luzolo Bambi.
By INSIDER Javier Monne
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