Mbalula to address media on Fifa scandal today

Fifa says SA had bribed former Fifa officials to secure votes to host the 2010 World Cup.

Sports and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

CAPE TOWN/ZURICH - Just over nine months after Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula stood in front of the world's media insisting that South Africa did not pay a bribe to bring the 2010 World Cup to the country, he'll do so again later today.

But this time to respond to Fifa itself now claiming South Africa did bribe disgraced former executives Jack Warner and Chuck Blazer, to secure their crucial votes to host the showpiece event.

That's all part of Fifa's submission to US authorities, which seeks to reclaim over $100 million from 41 individuals that face charges in the US.

"Bribes are like a ghost and it's untouchable, you never find it."

According to a Fifa statement in June last year, the $10 million was paid directly into the Diaspora Legacy Programme in the Caribbean and is seemingly the ghost that's now returned to haunt South Africa.

This latest claim is one of a number of main lines of inquiry into Warner as he faces extradition to the US to face charges after he had accepted a bribe to vote for Morocco in the 1998 World Cup hosting race, won by France, a Fifa report said.

It remains to be seen what criminal actions could now be taken and which, if any, South Africans will be implicated.

Mbalula was emphatic that the law must take its course.

"A bribe is a criminal act that is not meant to be known by others. It's an underground operation."

WATCH: Fikile Mbalula: Our hands are clean (Video from just over nine months ago)


Fifa said on Wednesday that members of its executive committee had in the past sold their votes in World Cup hosting contests.

"It is now apparent that multiple members of Fifa's Executive Committee abused their positions and sold their votes on multiple occasions," it said in a legal document filed to a US court.

The global soccer body has applied to US authorities for tens of millions of dollars in damages from ex-officials indicted there for graft.

The very future of Fifa has been put in question by the graft scandal, with some demanding its abolition.

The move for recompense casts Fifa for the first time, under its new president, prominently as plaintiff and victim.

_ Click here for the US Department of Justice's document._


Safa President Danny Jordaan reportedly confirmed that South Africa paid $10 million after the country won a bid to host the 2010 World Cup.

The Sunday Independent reported that Jordaan said the money was not a bribe, and was in fact paid to the Confederation of North, Central American and the Caribbean Football Association (Concacaf) in 2008.

The United States Justice Department had claimed a South African bid official paid a bribe for the hosting of the 2010 soccer spectacle.

The newspaper quoted Jordaan as saying the $80 million was paid directly over to South African football authorities in 2008 for the soccer tournament.

A further $20 million was allocated to build Safa House and $10 million was paid to Concacaf.

The paper further claims that no other football association under Fifa had received such a cash injection during 2008.

Additional reporting by Reuters.