Report: ‘Deliberately miscounted’ votes cost Morocco 2010 World Cup

Special to

World soccer body FIFA was dragged deeper into controversy on June 7 when a report claimed Morocco won the vote to host the 2010 World Cup but was denied the tournament when “deliberately miscounted” votes awarded it to South Africa.

South Africa (yellow) plays Mexico in the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
South Africa (yellow) vs Mexico in the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

A report in South Africa’s Sunday Times revealed secret video that showed then-FIFA executive committee member Ismail Bhamjee discussing the ballot with other colleagues who voted for Morocco and “we found out that actually Morocco won by two votes.”

Bhamjee went on to say in the video that the votes could have been “deliberately miscounted” and added “please, this is very secret.”

Also in the video, Bhamjee said that Morocco had paid a bribe of more than $1 million to secure the vote of the then-president of CONCACAF (North, Central and Caribbean Association Football) but that the official changed his vote to South Africa “because they offered him more money.”

South Africa has denied the allegations.

The Sunday Times said it handed over the video evidence to FIFA executives, including outgoing president Sepp Blatter, British media reported on June 7.

The tape later shows Bhamjee saying: “Morocco actually won the vote to host the World Cup. but Blatter (inaudible) the whole thing.”

The report on the 2010 World Cup comes as trouble continues to mount against FIFA. Seven top officials have been arrested and 14 people have been indicted by the FBI in the ongoing investigation against the world soccer governing body.

The crisis forced Blatter to step down from his post days after being re-elected for a fifth four-year term.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login