Unfortunately, this story comes without much surprise to people who have closely followed corruption throughout FIFA over the last decade. Reports suggest that former senior FIFA official Jack Warner and his family were paid $2 million from a Qatari firm linked to the successful 2022 World Cup bid.
Warner pocketed over $1 million himself from a former Qatari football official once the bid was announced. However, given the recent trend of deceit within the governing body, this news of corruption is far from a shock.
The Telegraph reported that $750,000 went to Warner’s sons while one of his employees walked away with $400,000. These payments make it easier to understand why the decision to hold the 2022 event in Qatar was made despite sweltering summer heat and numerous human rights violations.
Warner is now under investigation by the FBI. His eldest son is helping with the investigation. The payments Warner received were from a company owned by Mohamed Bin Hammam, Kemco. Kemco is a leading electro-mechanical contracting company in Doha, Qatar, so you can see how they would have benefited from a successful bid.
This is not the first time Warner has been under fire. A report last April said that Warner pocketed $462,000 from the Australian Football Federation after their failed World Cup bid. The Qatari bribe money was handed over to Warner just two weeks after the 2022 announcement was made. He joins several other members of the FIFA selection committee who are suspected of corruption.
This came after an undercover operation revealed that a FIFA official had agreed to sell his bid for the 2018 World Cup. Another official was caught asking for money for a sports academy. Allegations that three votes were bought from African committee members were later dropped. There was also the alleged bribes to Caribbean soccer officials during the last FIFA presidential election. However, FIFA president Sepp Blatter has been exonerated from the on-going corruption.
The allegations and accusations of wrongdoing within FIFA continue with greed and power as the underlying factors. There will most likely be more allegations and truths to come as independent panels and investigations dig into the proceedings of the last 10 years. Regardless, the two World Cups after this year are heavily tainted.