Confederation of African Football (Caf) president Ahmad has been banned for five years by Fifa for breaching various codes of ethics.
The Fifa vice-president, 60, has been found to have breached codes relating to duty of loyalty, offering and accepting gifts, abuse of position as well as misappropriation of funds.
“The investigation into Mr Ahmad’s conduct … from 2017 to 2019 concerned various Caf-related governance issues, including the organisation and financing of an Umrah pilgrimage to Mecca, his involvement in Caf’s dealing with the sports equipment company Tactical Steel and other activities,” a Fifa statement read.
Mr Ahmad, whose impending ban was announced by BBC Sport Africa last month, has also been fined $200,000. He has previously denied any wrongdoing.
The Malagasy can appeal his sanction at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) once he has received the full grounds for the decision, a process that can take up to 60 days.
Last month, the former head of Madagascar’s FA announced his intention to go for a second term in office when Caf elections take place next March.
This is now in major doubt as Mr Ahmad, who was elected Caf president in 2017, would have to pass an eligibility test to resume his place on the Fifa Council.
Any chances of re-election will be dependent on not only winning his appeal at CAS but also ensuring said appeal is heard early enough to allow him to be confirmed as a candidate.
Mr Ahmad recently stepped back from leading Caf, stating that he had done so for ‘medical reasons’ as he continues to recover from coronavirus, so leaving Caf’s first vice-president Constant Omari in charge of leading the organisation.