Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA) has ordered for the postponement of the elections for the Rwandan Football Association (FERWAFA).
This follows concerns raised by 14 FERWAFA General Assembly members.
The incumbent Vincent Nzamwit is being challenged by Albert Mwanafunzi in the election that had been initially scheduled for on September 10.
In a letter written in French, signed by the FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura, she ordered the elections to be pushed ahead until further notice.
On August 25, 2017, FERWAFA General Assembly members raised a number of issues including lack of transparency and violation of FIFA Electoral Code.
The Spokesperson for ‘Rwanda Football Coalition for Change’ a group that says it strives for positive change in Rwandan football, Fidele Kanamugire, said that they observed that the electoral process lacked proper procedures.
“We disagreed with their response because they know there are standards and regulations that must be followed by all Fifa member Associations, which prompted us to seek for Fifa intervention and we’re happy that our concerns were heard,” Kanamugire, stated as quoted by New Times.
Kanamugire noted that Fifa standard rules state that an independent Electoral Commission should be appointed six months before the election dates; the commission must not include someone working in government and there should be an arbitration team, in case of any appeal that may arise.
He further noted that, according to standard procedure, the federation’s Secretary General, Tharcille Latifa Uwamahoro, is supposed to be on the Electoral Commission but in Ferwafa’s case, she is not.
Kanamugire also faulted the Electoral Commission, headed by APR secretary general Adoph Kalisa, of setting unrealistic conditions for the opposition candidates and some members, who submitted their credentials to stand for other positions, were turned down.
“This is why we requested for Fifa to intervene for the good of our football, all we want is for the elections to be free and fair and free—we are gland that Fifa has stepped in to enforce transparency as a prerequisite of fairness,” he explained.
Nzamwita acknowledged receiving the letter and revealed that he talked to Fifa Secretary General Samoura on Friday night over the issue and she advised them on what they need to do to ensure that Ferwafa regulations match with the Fifa status.
“Fifa has agreed to send a team of experts to help us align our regulations to be in conformity with the Fifa status then after we will summon an extraordinary general assembly to approve them before calling for an elective general assembly,” Nzamwita said in a statement posted on Ferwafa website.