Sepp Blatter (1998 – 2015): A man who kept African hopes alive


By Tinzwei 
 
Before long – football archives will testify that there was a once a man named Josef Sepp Blatter – a Swiss inhabitant who fought, legally or otherwise to usher in a rotation structure and forward the soccer World Cup to Africa.

His feat, once defeated in 2006, was resurrected in 2010 to discharge his earlier pledge with South Africa becoming the foremost African republic to host the football extravaganza. Five years on, and 17 years in office, he succumbed to a football fiasco that is whispered to have dated back to his precursor, Brazilian Joao Havelange. For now, South Africa features prominently alongside Chucky Blazer, a football administrator-cum police informant, Jack Warner and a host of football Mafioso who reportedly assumed leadership anchoring altruistic mottos.   

Rightly so, the European media is feasting on Blatter’s career cadaver, even though he has since disembarked from the throne citing lack of support from the wider football devotees – excluding Africa we presume. Wait a while, didn’t we get fed with similar excuses from previous bureaucrats. Still implanted in sullenness, associations who lost previous bids have unleashed their propaganda apparatus to shred his legacy into drivel, particularly Europe and America. Let them have a share of him – we also had our unique moments in 2010.

What a sad formula to proffer parting shots to the eighth president of Fifa who attracted rebuke to bring ecstasy to Africa, albeit in hosting format only as we will never taste victory of the cup in many more centuries to follow. Pity, majority of the tourists who feared for their lives could not get enough of the sun, sand, soccer and sex found in abundance herein. That’s Africa for you. After according us the soccer showpiece, FBI investigators are on or have been on Blatter’s trail. Chief among the culprits is South Africa accused of offering the fattest brown envelope valued at $10 million disguised as football development funds intended for the Caribbean, whilst its own soccer is in arrears. Cry beloved motherland.

Bulk media legroom has been allotted to deny any attachment in the saga. This contrive was always probable from a man who has a firm history in public relations, coupled with a prolonged service ever since 1974. As football dinosaurs, soccer administrators have been known to outfox their rivalry. Here in Africa we have endured an albatross under Issa Hayatou, a Cameroonian who has stuck to the post even in his fading wellbeing. The recounting enquiry will surely reveal more than we imagined.

And those with football secrets in their changing rooms are surely advised to reveal all before another scoop, just like Blazer. European countries that lost the bid to host the soccer centrepiece will surely continue to instigate investigations to instil permanent injury and hopefully resume their hosting rites. Even though the sun has sunk for Blatter – nor when Swiss chocolate tastes like Durban beach sand, Africa will evermore applaud you for your boldness or is it baldness when you championed the philosophy that promised Asia and Africa World Cup hosting slots – nonetheless we assumed it through a whispered heretical means.

Sorry, comrade Blatter – Africa could not fall with you but we are always with you, in borstal, death and otherwise. While your nuptials with Barbra Kaser and Graziella Bianca failed, contrary your football antics prospered, chiefly south of the Sahara. Now that you have departed, who shall cart Africa’s football encumber? At a ripe age of 79, you still remain our darling. Africa says, farewell, to a gentleman who kept his promise towards us – intact. – Tinzwei      

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