Qatar paid $5m in bribes to secure 2022 World Cup

UK newspaper The Sunday Times says slush fund was used to secure votes

Qatar used a slush fund of $5m to bribe FIFA officials to win the 2022 World Cup, according to documents obtained by the UK's The Sunday Times newspaper.

The paper claims that it has uncovered a “bombshell cache of millions of documents… which expose how Qatar’s astonishing victory in the race to secure the right to host the 2022 tournament was sealed by a covert campaign by Mohammed bin Hammam, the country’s top football official.”

Qatar was awarded the tournament in 2010 by FIFA in a decision that provoked widespread disbelief and condemnation, and the country has been dogged by allegations of bribery ever since.

The paper says that Bin Hammam channeled cash payments of up to $200,000 into the bank accounts of the presidents of 30 African football associations. It also alleges that several events were held in Qatar where more cash was handed out. A further $1.6m was paid in bribes to Jack Warner, former vice president of FIFA, the paper alleges - $450,000 of which was paid just before the World Cup vote.

The paper also claims that 25 FIFA delegates received $200,000 in cash after being flown to Malaysia to discuss the bid, and that one FIFA official asked for $232,000 to be sent to his personal bank account.

Bin Hammam himself was kicked out of world football in 2011 after being found guilty of trying to bribe officials in his bid to get elected as FIFA president.

The 2022 World Cup was awarded to Qatar in 2010, the same day that the 2018 tournament was awarded to Russia.

On Saturday, leading UK MP John Whittingdale called on Qatar to be stripped of the tournament. “There is now an overwhelming case that the decision to where the World Cup should be held in 2022 should be run again,” he said.

Last month FIFA boss Sepp Blatter admitted that it was a “mistake” to give Qatar the World Cup due to the extreme heat in the summer.

Legal experts suggest the new evidence could result in Qatar being suspended from the 2022 tournament pending an investigation, or completely thrown out. “There is a precedent for this – back in 1986 Columbia was scrapped as the host nation just months before the event because the stadiums were not deemed suitable. This is still 8 years away, so there would be no legal issues with FIFA deciding to re-run the bidding process.”

Should Qatar be removed, Japan, Australia, the USA and England are all expected to make new bids. Last year, Arabian Business called on Qatar to hand back the World Cup over growing concerns over the summer heat and the number of deaths of labourer working on the infrastructure to host the even.

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Posted by: A M Rawof

Prior to punishing the Qatar; all decision making board and officials to be sacked for accepting any bribe; in particular not only 2022, also 2018 and current 2014 to be reviewed. if such corruption really exist, then game and the relevant organizers reputations are questionable.

Posted by: Yet Again

It is starting to appear that it is CORRUPTION that makes the World go round...apparently

What happened, I cannot remember hearing of so much corruption that there is right now, it seems RIFE

Posted by: Osama Tannous

I have one question, if Qatar paid the money, then the people who got paid must be from the FIFA it self, so the question is.

If all are corrupted who will run the voting for Qatar's replacement?

In my opinion this is all false allegations coming out of jealousy for not winning the world cup and also because it is an arab country and all westerners think we don't deserve it.

If England thinks Qatar is this corrupted and have no human right and labor right, pull out all your expats from Qatar and all your multi million dollar companies and leave.

So please do not be like a snake that will bite the hand of its feeder.

Posted by: procan

@omama.... you understand that if the Brits are expelled from Qatar, Canada, USA and other Western nations also leave. Qatar is now part of Iran.

Posted by: Doug

There's also the small point (that granted, you'd miss living in a country with a native population smaller than Cardiff) that one newspaper in Britain doesn't speak for the British government or the English FA. There's also the other point that private businesses and individuals are free to live and work without interference from their home government.

Also, be VERY careful what you wish for with your anti-British rhetoric. You might want to read a little history to find out exactly how the rulers of Qatar ended up being the rulers....and which country was the one that did the most to put them there...

Posted by: Meh

Here we go again...If you don't like it just leave. It is so simple isn't it?

I don't think other countries are jealous (of Qatar) and they certainly don't mind that an Arab country won the right to host WC, but if it the voting was influenced by money in the pocket of the people voting then that's a big no-no. Of course they didn't like losing the vote however and why would anyone bother spending time and money putting together a bid ever again? After all there is after all always some country with more money than morals willing to buy there way in...

By the way it's not just England who think that Qatar have no human and labor rights. Everyone who has ever been there, or know someone working there knows this for a fact!

Posted by: NYCBro

What? Corruption in sports?? Why, I'm shocked, SHOCKED!

Posted by: Mickey D

It may be and is probably true, as the world of international sport seems corrupt beyond help whether in be the Olympics, the Tour de France or FIFA. I don't understand why anyone is surprised to hear this, as it seems to be the way this "business" is done. I'm surprised Qatar did not expect this to come out with the recent spotlight on the country's labour practices, which are not exclusive to Qatar either. Still, if they did do so, then they are corrupt and should be punished for it, as should anyone else involved. So much for the spirit of international competition on a level playing field. I don't think this is what Adam Smith meant by the "invisible hand"...

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