After serving as Secretary General of the United Nations and fighting disease, terrorism, war, famine and corruption, maybe it’s time for Kofi Annan to take on a real challenge, like reforming FIFA.
At least, that’s what a group of campaigners want. “We are calling for Kofi Annan to come into this mess and take control of the reform process,” Jaimie Fuller of the New FIFA Now group told reporters in Zurich.
The Ghanaian diplomat jointly won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001, and it’s not unreasonable to think that a guy who brokered a ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah might be able to sit a few FIFA suits around a table and knock some sense into them.
Blatter met with Annan in 2013 and gave him a silky blue FIFA pennant. So there’s at least a little history between them.
And Annan has weighed in on the subject to CNN, saying “let me put it this way, that change is not an event, it’s a process. As high as our expectations are, it will take time to reform the organization but it can be done.”
But President Sepp Blatter told a news conference today that FIFA’s setting up a Task Force (big wow) which, surprise, seems likely to appoint from within.
A spokesman for Annan’s foundation told Reuters that he “has not been formally approached by any side on this matter, nor does he plan to widen the scope of his already busy schedule.” Apparently the guy’s too busy sorting out climate change. He needs to work on his priorities.
Which all seems to leave us watching and waiting to see what FIFA will do in the final seven months of Blatter’s presidency, and what his successor will do. And not holding our breath for anything dramatic.