Cameroon shows mixed feelings for Hayatou fall

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Ahmad Ahmad of Madagascar shortly after being elected the new president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in Addis Ababa. Net photo.

YAOUNDE – News of veteran Issa Hayatou’s defeat in Thursdayy’s Confederation of African Football’s presidential elections in Addis Ababa drew animated debates in his native Cameroon.

While some of Hayatou’s compatriots would have loved to see the septuagenarian chair the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in his country of origin, others think he had been at the helm of the continental football governing body for too long.

Madagascan Ahmad Ahmad was elected Caf president, winning the election in the Ethiopian capital by 34 votes to Hayatou’s 20.

News of veteran Issa Hayatou’s defeat in Thursday’s Confederation of African Football’s presidential elections in Addis Ababa drew animated debates in his native Cameroon.

While some of Hayatou’s compatriots would have loved to see the septuagenarian chair the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in his country of origin, others think he had been at the helm of the continental football governing body for too long.

Madagascan Ahmad Ahmad was elected Caf president, winning the election in the Ethiopian capital by 34 votes to Hayatou’s 20.

Lucas Teneng, publisher of The Reporter newspaper and sports chronicler told Nation Sports in Yaounde that he received the news of Hayatou’s defeat with some mix feelings.

He said as a Cameroonian, he would have loved his compatriot to pick up another mandate – firstly, because Cameroon is organizing AFCON in 2019 which the eighth mandate of Hayatou would have been like the icing the cake of his career and also because another victory for Hayatou would have been a diplomatic victory for his country, Cameroon.

“But on second thought, I realized I was being myopic and personal about an election that aims at improving football in the continent. Football in particular is a game that involves the youth and should have an energetic and dynamic person to handle its affairs,” he said.

The sports chronicler expatiated that during this year’s AFCON in Gabon, Hayatou barely performed his duties of Caf president, possibly due to age or illness.

Prior to the elections, former national football team captain and current Antalyaspor striker Samuel Eto’o told Jeune Afrique that Issa Hayatou had done a lot to the development of football on the continent but the football body needed change.

Agencies