South Korea’s Chung Mong-Joon denies any wrongdoing but has accused the committee of sabotaging his campaign.
Chung, who served as a FIFA vice-president for 17 years, says he’s being charged with violating six articles from FIFA’s code of ethics, in relation to his support for South Korea’s 2022 World Cup bid and his proposals to launch a Global Football Fund (GFF).
FIFA are yet to make a statement about Chung’s case.
Speaking at a news conference in Seoul, Chung read out a nine-page statement, addressing the charges against him, which he regards as a ploy “to prevent me from running for the President of FIFA”.
“The fundamental reason why I am being targeted is that I aimed straight at the existing power structure of FIFA,” he said.
“The ethics committee is not charging me with a criminal offence, and it is not charging me with ‘bribery,’ ‘corruption’ or ‘conflict of interest’.
“All that the ethics committee is relying on is that I have not fully ‘cooperated’ or ‘collaborated’ with the investigation and that I had violated ‘confidentiality’ requirements.” Chung said his proposals for the establishment of a GFF were compliant with FIFA’s rules at the time and had already been investigated and cleared.
He provided copies of two letters signed by former FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke, stating that FIFA agreed the integrity of the bidding process had not been affected so the matter was deemed closed.
“Yet the Ethics Committee has now asked for 15 years of sanction for this,” added Chung.
“With the campaign season starting, even issues that had been closed many years ago, have a way of being revived.”
FIFA will hold an election on February 26, 2016 to replace Sepp Blatter, with its election panel due to approve candidates in November after integrity checks.
UEFA president Michel Platini of France and Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan have also declared their candidacy for world football’s top office. — Sky Sports