A Cairo economic court in Cairo on Monday November 26 fined former President of the Confederation of African Football Issa Hayatou 24.5 million Euros(15,9 billion FCFA) over monopoly practices.
Issa Hayatou alongside his Secretary General when he served as Caf boss, Egyptian born Hicham El-Amrani had been charged for violating Egypt’s competition law related to selling exclusive broadcast and sponsoring rights to French company Lagardère Sports without a tender.
The case was referred to the prosecution back in 2017 requesting for the suspension of the commercial contract between CAF and Lagardère Sports because it did not comply with Egypt’s anti-monopoly laws.
Genesis of the matter
Issa Hayatou and his Secretary General Hicham El-Amrani signed a 1 billion dollar deal with on behalf of Caf on September 28, 2016 with Lagadère sports. By this contract, Caf had ceded the management media and marketing rights to the French firm for the period 2017-2028.
The deal had raised eyebrows with Egyptian firm Presentation Sports lodged a complaint in against Caf. The Egyptian firm said it tried to rival Lagadère sports in vain as the French company and Caf had enterred into negotiations since 12 June 2015.
The Egyptian Authority for Fair competition had referred the matter to the Cairo Economic Court on 4 January 2017, and on March 12, 2017, a prosecutor opened the took the lead in the matter.
Caf had at the time denied any wrongdoing in the contract that linked them to Lagadère sports and vowed to defend themselves by all legal means.
Hayatou since lost his position as Caf boss in 2017 when he was defeated by Madagascar’s Ahmad Ahmad to end the Cameroonian’s 29-year reign at the Cairo-based organisation.
His successor Ahmad in April 2018 revealed that he had set up a commission to renegotiate the contract the contract with Lagadère sports. Ahmad said his move was for the interest of African football and expressed delight the French firm was ready to reopen talks.