Confederation of African Football (Caf) president Ahmad has been restored as a candidate for the March elections by the organisation’s Governance Committee.
The decision to re-admit Ahmad as a candidate comes after his five-year ban from football by Fifa was temporarily suspended by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on 29 January.
Although he has been cleared by Caf’s Governance Committee, which met on Friday, the Malagasy needs Fifa to overturn its previous decision to rule him out of the elections if he is to make the ballot on 12 March.
The 61-year-old is hoping to become the fifth participant in the elections, where Jacques Anouma (Ivory Coast), Patrice Motsepe (South Africa), Augustin Senghor (Senegal) and Ahmed Yahya (Mauritania) have already been approved as candidates.
Ahmad’s camp approached Fifa earlier this week to ask that the decision by the Review Committee to bar Ahmad from the elections, which was made before CAS lifted his ban, can be overturned.
Football’s world governing body, which was asked to have the final say on vetting candidates by Caf’s Emergency Committee, has yet to respond to the requests.
When asked earlier this week about the CAS ruling which resumed Ahmad’s presidential reign, Fifa had no further comment than: “Fifa has taken note of the CAS decision”.
Ahmad, who took charge of Caf in 2017, was banned by Fifa in November after being adjudged to have broken several ethics codes.
Last month, CAS – sport’s highest legal body – said that it was temporarily lifting Ahmad’s Fifa ban “due to a risk of irreparable harm for Mr Ahmad if the disciplinary sanction is maintained during the period prior to the Caf elections”.
The Switzerland-based body says it will hear the appeal in full on 2 March, with a decision issued before the Caf presidential elections on 12 March.
This effective suspension of the Fifa ruling will be in place ‘until the day that the final Cas award is issued’ whereupon Ahmad will either be able to bid for another four-year term of be out of the race completely.