Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sweeping FIFA's corruption under the carpet is the patriotic thing to do?

I've read this a couple of times now and still find its implications disturbing:
The BBC's plan to broadcast a Panorama documentary into allegations of Fifa corruption is "unpatriotic", says the head of England's 2018 World Cup bid.

"I'm incredibly disappointed with the timing of what the BBC seem to be proposing with Panorama," said the 2018 bid chief executive Andy Anson.

"To do it the week before the vote - I don't think think it's patriotic."
So... if the FIFA hierarchy do take umbrage at the programme's findings and as an "indirect" result, England lost the 2018 World Cup, what does that say about the morality behind the whole selection process?

And it's not just the BBC which has been causing upset:
More recently England's bid suffered further damage following corruption allegations made against Fifa by the Sunday Times newspaper.
Anson went on:
Anson, who also branded the Panorama programme "sensationalist", has been to see the BBC's director general Mark Thompson about the documentary, but the 2018 bid chief made clear he had not asked for the programme not to be shown.

"I did not ask him to do that, I just told him what the potential implications of doing it would cause," said Anson, who knows the contents of the letters Panorama had sent to Fifa executive committee members it had wanted to interview.

"The issues seem to be things dealt with by the Swiss courts and by Fifa in the past. They're not happy with someone raking over old issues but then, no one would be.
In other words, FIFA have been onto Anson explaining the "consequences" for England's bid if the programme has been shown? The Panorama programme is due to be shown on November 29th, today:
... Fifa's ethics committee will announce the outcome of its investigation into claims that two executive committee members - Nigerian Amos Adamu and Tahitian Reynald Temarii were willing to offer their support in return for money for football projects.

Both men have denied any wrongdoing and will fight the allegations during the three-day hearing.
The committee will also rule on claims that Spain and Portugal have agreed a voting alliance with Qatar, who are bidding for the 2022 World Cup finals.

Unusually, Fifa has called an emergency executive committee meeting for Friday to discuss the findings.
If something untoward is found in either case, Anson still believes it would be "unpatriotic" and "sensationalist" for the BBC and other British media to report and comment on the rotten state of FIFA?

We have a media in this case prepared to report the truth, irrespective of the consequences and that should be a major cause of patriotic pride to Mr Anson.
If England are to win the 2018 bid, much better that it's done with integrity and conscience intact surely?

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