Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu took part in the voting at FIFA congress in Zurich on Friday which saw Sepp Blatter emerged victorious once again as president of world soccer’s governing body for a fifth term .
The corruption scandal that has shaken Fifa seemed to play a part as Blatter narrowly failed to win a majority in the first round of a presidential election. Blatter, aged 79, won 133 out of 206 votes, leaving him four votes short of the required two-thirds majority.
Blatter was declared the victor after Prince Ali , the 39-year-old son of Jordan’s late King Hussein, conceded defeat.
“Thank you for voting. I will be in command of this boat called Fifa for the next four years and we will bring it back from offshore to the beach,” Blatter said. “But we have to work on that, and on other things we have to do for Fifa in the future.”
“I am now the president of everybody,” he said.
Prince Ali, who secured the support of many European countries, faced the difficulty of overturning Blatter’s strong support in Africa, the Caribbean and Asia, despite this week’s turmoil.
Blatter remained defiant despite the storm that has engulfed the organisation he has run for the past 17 years.
“All those who voted for Prince Ali, I congratulate you, he was a good candidate. But I am now the president of everybody,” he said.
But several delegates inside the hall suggested that the twin investigations launched by Swiss and American officials into alleged corruption at Fifa’s highest levels could leave Blatter weakened and unable to serve out a full four-year term.
Blatter drew on his considerable reserves of charm and chutzpah to appeal to voters worried about the turbulence surrounding Fifa. What they needed, he said, was a “strong leader, an experienced leader, a leader who knows the ins and outs of the situation”.
He was, he said, the safe choice. “We do not need revolutions, but we always need evolutions,” he said.
Blatter cited God and Allah in his speech, saying they would help guide FIFA out of its crisis.
“I promise you, in the end of my term I will give this FIFA to my successor in a very, very strong position, a robust FIFA and a good FIFA,” he said.
The vote was secret ballot but it believed Malawi FA vote went to Blatter, the Africa’s choice of FIfa leader.–Additional reporting by AP and FTFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :