March 17 (AdaDerana) – The International Football Federation (FIFA) has approved the suspension of the Football Federation of Sri Lanka (FFSL) from the organization and extended the suspension of the Zimbabwe Football Federation (ZIFA).
The decision on the results of the vote was taken at the long-awaited 73rd Congress of the world football governing body, on Thursday in Kigali, Rwanda. Close to 2,000 delegates including top football executives from FIFA met in Kigali for the Congress.
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The FIFA Congress, the supreme legislative body of FIFA, brings together top executives from FIFA, confederations and representatives from 211-member associations and other football stakeholders.
On Thursday, the FIFA Council recommended that congress participants confirm the temporary suspension of the Sri Lankan football governing body. During the vote, out of 211 FIFA member associations, 197 voted in favour of upholding the suspension.
The suspension means that the national team and club teams of the country are not eligible to participate in international competitions until the decision is reversed. In addition, no member or official of the federation can benefit from FIFA development programmes, courses, or training.
On 21 January 2023, FIFA announced the suspension of FFSL until further notice due to political interference, pursuant to a decision taken by the Bureau of the FIFA Council. The FFSL thereby lost all of its membership rights defined in Article 13 of FIFA Statutes.
Further, the Congress cast 199 votes to extend the suspension of ZIFA over government interference. FIFA first took the decision to suspend ZIFA on 24 February 2022 and was confirmed on 31 March 2022.
Meanwhile, Gianni Infantino was re-elected as the FIFA president until 2027 for a third term, after standing unopposed at the Congress.
The 52-year-old Swiss Italian lawyer was first elected to office in February 2016 and was re-elected in June 2019.
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