Senghor pulls out of the CAF presidential race in support of Patrice Motsepe

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FIFA Presidential candidate Patrice Motsepe’s bid to become CAF president has received a major boost after fellow Senegalese-born candidate, Augustin Senghor, on Friday evening confirmed his decision to pull out of the race.

The move was in support of his government’s decision to back Motsepe’s candidature for CAF presidency.

In a statement, Sengor says, After consultations with the Senegalese authorities during the discussions in Rabat and the approval of the FSF emergency committee during its meeting held on Tuesday March 02, 2021, taking into account the particular context of this campaign, we have decided to accept the consensual proposal submitted to us by FIFA, Morocco and Egypt, in the name of the Superior interest of the unity of African Football that we have put forward in our profession of faith.” 

 Earlier this week, it emerged that FIFA representatives had brokered a deal with Senghor and Mauritania’s Ahmed Yahya to support Motsepe’s candidacy in exchange for the positions of first and second vice presidents of CAF. 

Confirming the meeting in the statement, Senghor says the discussions resulted in an agreement in principle on two points. 

“A programmatic axis consisting in agreeing on a common management program resulting from the synthesis of the manifestos of the four candidates and which should be widely shared subsequently with all the associations members and actors of African football in a participatory and inclusive approach of collective ownership. An axis of collegial and concerted governance based on consensual distribution of functions within the office of the executive committee between the candidates in the running, namely Messrs Patrice Motsepe, Augustin Senghor, Ahmed Yahya and Jacques Anouma with well-defined and complementary attributions.” 

The parties also agreed that the final agreement should be concluded in Nouakchott on the sidelines of the CAN U2O Final on Saturday. 

“A report sanctioned the said discussions in the presence of Mr Fouzi Lekjaa, President of the Federation Royale Marocaine de Football, which was declared a depositary without the power to disclose it,” says Senghor. 

Senghor, a qualified lawyer, is a Senegalese politician, a member of the Rally of the Ecologists of Senegal political party and has been the Mayor of Gorée in Dakar, a former slave-trading centre, for 19 years (since 2002). 

He is the President of the US Gorée football club, which plays in the first division and has been crowned with four championship wins and four cups. 

He was elected as president of the Senegal Football Association (FSF) in 2009, a position he still holds. – additional reporting by Thabang Nkgweng