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Cartan Global | Tokyo 2020


A proposal to enforce good governance following the problems experienced by local football officials was a leading item on the agenda at the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC) General Assembly in Paramaribo, Suriname.

Caribbean officials have been at the centre of scandals at the heart of football's world governing body in recent years, with Cayman Island's FIFA vice-present Jeffrey Webb among those arrested by Swiss police acting at the request of the United States Department of Justice on charges of racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy during May's FIFA Congress in Zurich.

Another former FIFA vice-president, Trinidad and Tobago's Jack Warner, was also banned for life from taking part in football-related activity last month after he was found to be a "key player" in illegal money making schemes.

This followed a string of controversies surrounding the official in the past.

It was Warner's compatriot in Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee President Brian Lewis who raised the need for a Good Governance Code during the 13th General Assembly of the regional 20-member body.

The recommendation was approved and work is now expected to "commence immediately on this aspect of CANOC’s advancement as a world leader in sport administration".

“There is a definite inclination to ensure that CANOC plays a leading role in the application of good governance philosophy, principles and practices in sport," said Keith Joseph, the body's general secretary, who is also secretary general of the Saint Vincent and The Grenadines Olympic Committee.

"Given the international focus placed on FIFA and the startling revelations emerging from the investigations it is important that we in the Caribbean take the necessary steps to ensure that CANOC as an organisation and each individual National Olympic Committee and Commonwealth Games Association affiliated become exemplars of good governance."

This marks the first concrete example of a body in the Olymic Movement specifically citing problems within in FIFA as a reason for governance changes.

There remain concerns, however, about whether the situation will blight the reputation of other sports and bodies, with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach having earlier this month warned FIFA must act "swiftly to regain credibility"