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AIPS President Gianni Merlo protests CAF's decision to launch new Confederation of Africa Sports Press

Published on: 04 February 2018
AIPS President Gianni Merlo

President of the International Sports Press Association (AIPS), Gianni Merlo has strongly protested against the decision of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to launch a new Sports Press for Africa insisting it is against the ethics of journalism.

Merlo considers the decision of CAF President Ahmad as a startling and fascinating attempt to skew the media without a clearly defined initiative which contradicts the freedom and independence of the press.

Gianni Merlo believes that Ahmad does not appreciate the repercussions of trying to create a journalistic wing for CAF hence his swift attempt to have such an institution in place.

Clearly, Merlo's position seeks to indicate that as the President of AIPS, CAF will never have the chance of creating such an institution.

In a letter signed by Gianni Merlo and addressed to Dr. Ahmad,  the AIPS President  further explained that any initiative that will emerge from the journalism in crisis across the world are welcomed by the International Sports Press Association but not when its objectives and clear definitions are concealed.

"The AIPS has been organizing forum for African journalist in consultation with FIFA over the years where strict adherence to transparency and independence to press are held and that CAF cannot finance and launch the African Sports Press Confederation which will be tantamount to conflict of interest," Merlo noted.

Merlo called on Ahmad and CAF as an institution to join forces with AIPS and FIFA to fight against corruption and match fixing in sports which have been the biggest bane in world sports as his 94-year-old institution has showed much commitment and has been effortless in curtailing this menace.

He concluded that the major aim of the AIPS is to unite journalist through educational workshop across the globe to fight this ill in sports which CAF is trying to create confusion and division in curbing this nagging problem in world sports.

He pressed on CAF to rethink their decision to launch the African Sports Press Confederation since it's not late to remedy this negative implementation for the betterment of world sports.

CAF President Dr.  Ahmad in response to a query by a journalist during a press briefing in Morocco during the CHAN Tournament did not sound very optimistic about the creation of the African Sports Press Confederation indicating that it's not his target to create such a body.

"Reorganizing the press is neither my vocation nor my responsibility as the president of CAF and we have nothing to do with this project.

The circumstances allow it to happen during the CHAN," he noted.

"For people of the sport media that are present during my events, I have the duty to help them in my possibilities knowing the reality of our continent," he added.

Following Ahmad's response, the media fraternity is expecting an amicable coherence between CAF and AIPS regarding the creation of the journalism wing of CAF or not.

By: Sheikh Tophic Sienu @desheikh1 on twitter

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