The Best Football Awards 2019: FIFA Releases Statement About Reports Of Electoral Fraud
FIFA President Gianni Infantino. Photo: Getty Images

The world football governing body, FIFA has released an official statement to counter claims of electoral fraud regarding The Best Football Awards 2019.

Concise News reports that in a release on its official website on Friday, FIFA says it is ‘disappointed to see a number of reports in the media questioning the integrity of the voting process’.

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Also, it states that there is no doubt as to the authenticity of the final result of the voting for each category.

Read the full statement below:

FIFA has been disappointed to see a number of reports in the media questioning the integrity of the voting process for The Best FIFA Football Awards.

These reports are unfair and misleading.

The voting procedure for each of the awards is supervised and monitored by an independent observer, in this case PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Switzerland.

FIFA and PwC follow the Rules of Allocation and relevant standard control procedures.

As per these procedures, FIFA requested all member associations to submit their voting forms both electronically and in writing.

The written documents must also be signed by the responsible persons of the association as well as by the persons authorised to vote.

Therefore in order for a vote to be valid it must include the respective signatures and the member association’s stamp.

Both FIFA and the independent observer can demonstrate that all the votes submitted in accordance with the rules and within the deadlines were taken into account.

Consequently, there is no doubt whatsoever as to the authenticity of the result.

Should there have been any case of wrong-doing, and even if this did not affect the result of the vote, FIFA will investigate and apply sanctions where necessary.

It would be recalled that the Egyptian Football Association had claimed that acting head coach Shawky Gharib and captain Ahmed Elmohamady both voted for Mohamed Salah to win The Best FIFA Men’s Award, but their votes were not credited accordingly.

FIFA responded saying Egypt’s votes for Liverpool star Salah were not counted for the said award because the signatures were in capital letters.

The coach of Sudan and the captain of Nicaragua have also claimed inaccuracies regarding their votes this year, saying their submissions published by FIFA under their names were not for the player they actually chose.

Now, FIFA has addressed the controversies.