Cameroonian Issa Hayatou’s 29-year reign as president of the Confederation of African Football has come to an end.
He was ousted today in the much anticipated election for the African footballing top post by Madagascar’s Ahmad Ahmad.
Ahmad, 57, won the poll 34-20 at the CAF Congress in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The 70-year-old Cameroonian Hayatou, had been in power since 1988 and was seeking an eighth four-year term.
Prior to joining the race, Ahmad was the President of Malagasy Football Federation, and not much had been heard from him over the years because he was a silent member of Caf’s Executive Committee.
He is from a northwestern Malagasy village and is the first Madagascan to run for the presidency of a continental confederation.
Ahmad changed his stance when he revealed that he would be the one to take on Hayatou.
Hayatou had been concerned that Ahmad was pulling the strings from Southern Africa, especially when 24 African football association (FA) presidents met with FFfA president Gianni Infantino in Harare recently.
In Southern Africa, Ahmad gained the confidence of Cosafa last month, not surprisingly since its headed by Chiyangwa.
Ahmad’s progress would come as a relief to South Africa, as their association had long bemoaned the political power struggle Safa faced against the French language nations in the North of Africa.
Hayaatou’s exit seems to be welcome news to many football fans in Africa who feel it was high time left the scene.