Kuala Lumpur - The Asian confederation Thursday reiterated
its backing for Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa of Bahrain to succeed
disgraced Sepp Blatter as president of world football body FIFA.
Sheikh Salman, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC)
president, is one of five candidates in the February 26 election.
Richard Lai, AFC's marketing committee chairman from Guam
urged member associations to vote for its president.
"Our vision is One Asia, One Goal. Our goal is a united
Asia and to demonstrate that we must unite behind our president in the FIFA
election," Lai said.
"At present Asia has two candidates for the FIFA
Presidency. We must unite behind the one who will deliver these reforms and
that is the AFC president," he added.
The other Asian contender is Prince Ali bin al Hussein, the
39-year-old brother of Jordan's King Abdullah.
Also read: Blatter back at FIFA for appeal against 8-year ban
The AFC executive committee had already said it would
endorse Sheikh Salman at its previous meetings in New Delhi and in Doha.
"Thanks to that encouragement I have been able to enter
this election with the overwhelming support of my Confederation, and that is
clearly a massive help in my campaign," the AFC boss had said previously.
"I have received significant support around the world,
and am happy with how the campaign has gone so far. So I go into the final week
with confidence for the future of FIFA."
Sheikh Salman took over the Asian confederation in turmoil
in 2013 after Mohamed bin Hammam was kicked out amid graft allegations.
Last year Sheikh Salman was re-elected unopposed for a full,
four-year term and became a FIFA vice president into the bargain.
But he has been dogged by allegations that he was complicit
in Bahrain's harsh crackdown on pro-democracy activists in 2011, charges he
Besides the Asian contenders, the other remaining candidates
are Gianni Infantino from Switzerland, Tokyo Sexwale from South African and
Frenchman Jerome Champagne.For
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