People are tired of Qatar allegations, say bid team

Sun Nov 30, 2014 8:10pm EST
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By Patrick Johnston

MANILA (Reuters) - The public are growing tired of hearing about allegations of wrongdoing against Qatar's winning 2022 World Cup bid, according to organizers, with the Gulf state more interested in improving worker's rights than publishing Michael Garcia's report.

The 42-page summary of the ethics investigator's inquiry into the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup earlier this month has posed more questions than answers, and failed to quell the push for the vote for both tournaments to be restaged.

Qatar and Russia, both of whom have long pleaded their innocence, were cleared of wrong doing but the New York lawyer swiftly complained his work had been misrepresented by FIFA ethics judge Hans-Joachim Eckert, who delivered the summary.

The ethics committee did, however, open a number of formal cases against unidentified individuals and FIFA confirmed it had lodged a criminal complaint in Switzerland.

That, Qatar say, is not their issue.

"Our opinion is this report isn't in relation to Qatar, as a lot of people make it sound," Nasser Al Khater, member of the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee, told reporters in the Filipino capital. "The report, I understand, they are looking at certain individuals."

A report in British newspaper 'The Sunday Times' said it had passed on a dossier revealing further allegations of corruption regarding the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids, to a House of Commons committee and which were published on Saturday.

Al Khater, queried why they needed the protection of parliamentary privilege to make the "tired" accusations.   Continued...

General view of the showcase stadium is seen during the FIFA Inspection Visit for the Qatar 2022 World Cup Bid in Doha September 14, 2010. REUTERS/Fadi Al-Assaad