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‘FIFA Commits To Protecting The Integrity of Football’ -Braun Warns

FIFA Integrity Manager, François Braun has reiterated that FIFA follows a zero-tolerance policy on match manipulation and is committed to protecting the integrity of football.
The visiting FIFA official made the disclosure when he concluded a weeklong integrity training for sports administrators as well as football referees in Liberia.
According to Braun, FIFA will continue with its ongoing efforts to combat match manipulation through a variety of initiatives, which include the monitoring of international betting and a confidential reporting system with a dedicated integrity hotline and email address.
Braun warned all those involved directly with football (examples: FA officials, officials of clubs and referees) to avoid betting on local and international matches either directly or indirectly.
He, however, clarified that there is nothing wrong with a betting company sponsoring a club, a league, LFA, Wafu, Caf, Uefa or Fifa.
The FIFA integrity manager climaxed a weeklong integrity workshop with the Liberia Football Association (LFA).
Braun held a session with referees, who officiate in the 2019/2020 Orange national league and Petro Trade Cup and officials of clubs in the first, second and female divisions, at the Samuel Kanyon Doe sports complex in Paynesville on 20 February.
Deliberating on the theme, “protecting the integrity of football from match manipulation”, Braun drilled each session on the do’s and don’ts of Fifa integrity and disciplinary codes, which he encouraged the LFA to localize if it wants to address specific situation.
Braun revealed how FIFA unearthed a match manipulation involving Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey and former El Salvador coach Ramon Maradiaga.
Referee Lamptey was banned for life and Coach Maradiaga for two years from taking part in any kind of football-related activity (administrative, sports or any other) at national and international level.
Lartey was found guilty on 20 March 2017 of breaching article 69 paragraph one (unlawfully influencing match results) of the FFA disciplinary code during a 2018 World Cup qualifier when South Africa beat Senegal 2-1 on 12 November 2016 in Polokwane.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) upheld the decision on 6 September 2017 against Lamptey following a similar ruling by FIFA Appeal Committee and the match was replayed, which Senegal won 2-0 in Polokwane, on 10 November 2017.
Coach Maradiaga was banned on 2 May 2018 for “allowing and failing to report” a meeting in which a third party offered “financial compensation” to his players in exchange for fixing the result of a World Cup qualifier against Canada, which the players rejected and reported it at a news conference on 5 September 2016.
Canada won 3-1 a day later but were eliminated after Honduras drew 0-0 away to Mexico.
The Honduran, who coached his country and Guatemala, was found guilty of violating FIFA ethics code on bribery and corruption and duty of disclosure and fined 20,000 Swiss francs ($20,036.06).
LFA President Mustapha Raji, LFA compliance and integrity officer Morris Barsi Giah and Deputy Sports Minister Andy Quamie addressed a number of concerns from the referees and officials of clubs ranging from the Orange national league to Petro Trade Cup and sponsorship.
Braun also met with LFA registrar-general Jeffery Cholopleh and chief statistician Ernest Flahn of the competitions department on 19 February.
LFA executive committee member Joseph Kollie (Cllr.), who chairs the referee committee, attended as chairman of the legal committee on 18 February.
Braun, who arrived on 17 February, watched Bea Mountain pinned Monrovia Club Breweries 1-0 in an Orange first division match at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium (ATS) on 19 February.
He began his briefings with LFA Vice President Sekou Konneh and secretary-general Isaac Montgomery in a closed-door session at the ATS on 18 February.
He also met Barsi Giah and the disciplinary and legal committees in a working session. Braun then held a meeting with the government’s focal team at the National
Lottery Authority (NLA) to discuss the importance and way forward for the proposed Fifa Macolin convention for West Africa to be held in Liberia.
It was attended by Barsi Giah, Quamie, Assistant Justice Minister Eldrick Noah, Assistant Sports Minister James Toe and NLA’s Roger Abim-Karmon.
Braun departed Liberia for Switzerland after the closing formalities at the SKD on 20 February.

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