To what extent has the idea of corruption been engrained in the principles of supposed democratic following persons? FIFA has become embroiled with corruption and bribery charges from top to bottom. President Blatter is now the subject of an ongoing investigation and has been provisionally suspended 90 days as a result. There was a transaction of ~$2 million made from Blatter to the head of European Soccer Michel Platini. There was an environment, almost a culture, of corruption and bribery well before Blatter rose to the top of FIFA. This lack of personal accountability and justice in criminality are what is holding FIFA back from continued growth and likeability.
Corruption persists in society when the scales of justice are not present, but this lack in morality/legality can be prevented by better checks and balances in authority positions, having a criminal free environment, and education of correct practices in being a leader. While these aspirations may be extremely difficult to accomplish, but working hard to achieve them would better the people, as well as, those in leadership positions. It can even persist in entire countries not just in businesses or local government operations.
Switzerland, the home base for FIFA, is ranked tied for 5th as one of the least corrupt countries in the world. This surprises me because how a country so tight on corruption could let one of the biggest organizations in the world get away with this for decades doesn’t make any sense. As citizens of a country that holds justice to its highest degree we want to see criminals punished and crimes to become less frequent. When there has been a history of criminal activity it makes it hard for people to see through what is going on; since it has been continuing for many decades.
Sepp Blatter took over for former president João Havelange who he himself was under scrutiny for illegal activities during his presidential terms. Havelange ran the governing body of soccer for 24 years and his underling was none other than Blatter. Havelange was under investigation, but never went to trial because he had paid money to the liquidators of ISL (International Sport and Leisure) in order to not go to trial in 2010. Plus, the man was 90 years old and the statute of limitations in Switzerland had elapsed. So with a history already in order within FIFA it is no wonder how the next leader would continue the cycle.
Within FIFA there is no system of checks and balances. Such as the United States has with the three branches of government (Judiciary, Legislative, and Executive). No one is accountable for their actions within FIFA; FIFA’s high ranking executives has kept itself from the public’s view and is heavily reliant upon self-governing and self-containment. If there is not a system of checks and balances then someone like the top executives at FIFA may do as they please with no fear of anyone or anything to stop them.
Blatter was brought up in FIFA from the bottom all the way to the top. He learned what is was to be in FIFA from the man who did it the best himself. From this culture of corruption and lack of justice and being “raised” in it from the bottom to the highest spots of FIFA it is no wonder that someone could be engulfed by it. Blatter’s potentially illegal actions paint a picture that one could say is the result of being brought up through the ranks and being taught the “ways of FIFA”.
- How corrupt is your country? (n.d.). Retrieved October 31, 2015, from http://www.transparency.org/cpi2014/results
- Andelman, D. (n.d.). The World’s Most Corrupt Countries. Retrieved October 29, 2015, from http://www.forbes.com/2007/04/03/corruption-countries-nations-biz-07caphosp-cx_da_0403corrupt.html
- Borden, S. (2015, October 8). Sepp Blatter and Other Top Officials Are Suspended, Deepening FIFA’s Turmoil. Retrieved October 29, 2015, from http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/09/sports/soccer/sepp-blatter-michel-platini-jerome-valcke-fifa-suspended.html?_r=1
- Malliris, C. (2013, December 2). The Dark Side of FIFA: Selected controversies and the future of accountability in the organization. Retrieved October 29, 2015, from http://sites.duke.edu/wcwp/world-cup-guides/world-cup-2014/fifa-institutional-politics/the-dark-side-of-fifa-controversies-and-the-future/
- Kiernan, P., Jelmayer, R., & Magalhaes, L. (n.d.). Blatter Learned FIFA Ropes From Brazilian Mentor Havelange. Retrieved October 29, 2015, from http://www.wsj.com/articles/blatter-learned-fifa-ropes-from-brazilian-mentor-havelange-1432942368