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Algeria’s former Football Federation presidents under investigation

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The last three presidents of the Algerian Football Federation (FAF) — Kherredine Zetchi, Charaffedine Amara, and Dhjahid Zefizef — are currently under investigation by the Algerian justice system. This development comes as the Algiers prosecutor’s office announced the opening of a probe into the actions of these former leaders, along with eleven other officials associated with the federation.

In a statement released on Monday, the prosecutor’s office detailed the scope of the investigation, which includes several high-ranking figures within Algerian football.

Among those being scrutinized are the FAF’s secretary general, Mounir Debichi, his predecessor Mohamed Saad, and the general manager Amine Labdi. Additionally, three companies linked to the federation’s dealings are also under investigation.

The accusations leveled against these individuals are grave, involving allegations of abuse of office, misappropriation of public funds, and breaches of contract.

Specifically, the investigation will look into long-term partnerships and business dealings, including a notable partnership with the sportswear giant Adidas and the controversy surrounding the DZ Fan Store, associated with the French clothing brand New Man.

Djahid Zefizef, who resigned in mid-July 2023, is among those being investigated. His resignation followed his unsuccessful bid for election to the executive committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), where he was soundly defeated by Libyan candidate Abdulhakim Alshelmani, garnering only 15 votes to Alshelmani’s 38.

This electoral defeat was seen as a significant setback for Algeria’s ambitions to host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), a bid that ultimately went to their historic rival, Morocco.

The investigation marks a significant moment of reckoning for Algerian football, as the sport’s leadership faces intense scrutiny. The probe aims to uncover the extent of any misconduct and hold those responsible accountable.

For Zefizef, this inquiry adds to a series of professional challenges, including his recent rejection from the FAF’s Annual General Meeting by the current president, Walid Sadi.

As the investigation progresses, it promises to shed light on the internal workings of the FAF and the actions of its former leaders.

This situation underscores the ongoing issues within Algerian football governance and the need for transparency and accountability in managing the sport.

The outcome of this investigation could have far-reaching implications for Algerian football, potentially leading to significant reforms within the federation.

It also serves as a reminder of the importance of ethical leadership in sports administration, a principle that will be crucial for the future of Algerian football as it seeks to rebuild its reputation on the international stage.

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