Fifa demands apology over 2010 report

accreditation

The claim, according to a Sapa report, was made by journalist Matt Scott in his online ‘Digger’ column in the Guardian newspaper on Wednesday.

Scott said insurers were holding off on a decision to provide coverage for the event in South Africa amid fears that the stadiums would not be ready in time.

He said a Fifa decision to build up the reserve capital by the end of 2010 reflected “fears over insurance support for the tournament”.

However, in a strongly-worded letter Fifa has formally demanded a retraction, saying the claim is “factually wrong.”

In the letter, Fifa spokesperson Andreas Herren said Fifa was obliged in terms of its own statutes to build reserves.

These reserves were built among other reasons to be able to cope with a World Cup cancellation.

“We have never made any reference to 2010 in particular,” he said.

“You have made this allegation despite detailed statements to the contrary by the undersigned and against better knowledge.

“We consider this approach a serious breach of journalistic principles.”

According to the Sapa report, Herren said Scott quoted a “Fifa insider [who] admitted that insurance companies also had concerns about security, transport infrastructure and the local political climate.

“As above explained, we have made various statements to the contrary which are not reflected in your column,” Herren said.

“Again, we consider this a serious breach of journalistic principles and a lack of providing a balanced view.”

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