- Associated Press - Thursday, December 3, 2015

ZURICH (AP) - FIFA tried to carry out business as usual on Thursday, even as two more of its vice presidents were arrested on suspicion of taking millions of dollars in bribes.

Juan Angel Napout and Alfredo Hawit were detained at the U.S. Department of Justice’s request in pre-dawn raids in Zurich. Three hours later, they were due to take part in a FIFA executive committee meeting.

Top of the agenda: Agreeing to wide-ranging reforms to help protect FIFA as an institution from corrupt officials.

The proposals are also designed to show U.S. authorities that FIFA is serious about changing and curbing wrongdoing.

The executive committee agreed a slate of proposed changes that was shaped by a committee of soccer officials chaired by IOC veteran Francois Carrard, working from a document drafted by FIFA audit panel chairman Domenico Scala.

FIFA’s 209 member federations will be asked to approve the changes at the Feb. 26 election congress in Zurich.

Here are the main points:


-Breaking down the power structure of the widely discredited executive committee, which will be rebranded as the FIFA Council. It will make strategic decisions but day-to-day executive power transfers to the administration headed by a CEO-like secretary general. Financial and commercial decisions, including allocating project funds to member federations, will shift to committees with more independent members appointed from outside the “football family.”

-The FIFA presidency should become more of a figurehead position and never again be an executive office of the kind shaped by Sepp Blatter.

-Term limits of 12 years - in three four-year mandates - for the president, council members and heads of FIFA judicial bodies.

-Still, the 27-member ExCo will become a Council chaired by the president with 36 members, all elected by the six continental confederations. No automatic places for independent members and stakeholders such as clubs, leagues, players and fans.

-More involvement of women in football, with a guaranteed quota of six places on the Council, one from each confederation. Much of the momentum driven by co-opted executive committee member Moya Dodd of Australia.

-Stricter integrity checks for all election candidates and committee members, conducted by an independent FIFA-appointed committee.

-Full disclosure of annual pay received by president, council members and secretary general, chairs of independent committees and judicial bodies

-More efficient and cost-cutting committee structure. Just nine committees instead of the current 26 committees which give at least one seat in total to each of the 209 members.

-Commitment to respect human rights written into the FIFA statutes, requiring members and confederations to uphold.



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