FIFA – An Independent Reform Commission

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat

The corruption scandals plaguing FIFA are the result of a systemic failure of governance over many years. The criminal charges filed against FIFA and Confederation officials have tarnished the organisation and those associated with it. The failure by FIFA to recognise the severity of the problem, and its rejection of previous recommendations of reform, demonstrate that it is unable to reform itself.

There have been many calls for an Independent Reform Commission (IRC) – this is how it could be established:

Terms of Reference – for the Chair of the IRC to finalise

  1. To review and make recommendations on the governance structure of FIFA to minimise the risks of corruption and ensure transparency and accountability.
  2. To review and develop the Statutes and Codes of FIFA accordingly.
  3. To review and make recommendations on urgent anti-corruption measures required.
  4. To review and make recommendations on the bidding, awarding and hosting criteria for all current and future major FIFA events including responsibilities towards human rights, anti-corruption and environmental and social sustainability.
  5. To determine and oversee the composition and recruitment of the Commission so that it is able to reflect the interests of all stakeholders, ensuring each member is an independent person of high repute.  
  6. To appoint independent expert advisers as may be required.
  7. To make public interim and annual reports and records of Commission meetings.
  8. To make public the final report of the Commission

The FIFA Executive Committee is required to:

  1. To agree and abide by the terms of reference as set out above.
  2. To provide funding for an independent secretariat with an initial budget.
  3. To allocate to the secretariat the budget as determined by the Chair of the IRC.
  4. To fully co-operate with the Commission in the provision of documents and witnesses as required.
  5. To indemnify the Chair, Commission and secretariat.

The Secretariat

  1. To be an independent organisation with appropriate expertise and international standing.
  2. To establish an independent panel of stakeholders to recruit the Chair.
  3. To have in place transparent and accountable governance and reporting procedures.
  4. To make public all expenditure in line with best practice and report accordingly to the Chair.


  1.  The Chair, Members of the Commission, appointments panel and secretariat must have no conflict of interest in relation to FIFA, including any payment or commercial interest in the past or currently in respect of them or any members of their immediate family.
  2.  A condition of participation would be that the Chair, the Members of the Commission and the members of the secretariat undertake not to accept any paid position with FIFA or receive fees from FIFA for a period of five years after the commencement of the Commission’s work.


What makes this different from previous attempts?

An independent panel will recruit the Chair not FIFA. It is proposed that the Chair would be a person of high standing such as a former leader of an international organisation or a judicial figure of repute.

The Chair and Commission will be supported by an independent secretariat and not FIFA.


For any press enquiries please contact

E: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
T: +49 30 343820666


Support Transparency International

Support Us

Power for Nigeria’s people

Bribery in electricity supply ruins livelihoods, but Nigeria’s residents are speaking out.

The terrible consequences of police corruption in South Africa

What do we do when those mandated to protect us are serving other interests than public safety and security? In South Africa, police corruption leaves the public exposed to high rates of crime, and causes distrust of the police service while allowing crime to flourish.

Why do DRC citizens report such high levels of corruption?

People's experiences with corruption in the DRC are far worse than in most other African countries. Why is corruption so prevalent in the DRC, why is bribery so commonplace and why do two thirds of citizens feel powerless?

Three ways to stop money laundering through real estate

Around the world, buying property is a favourite method for the corrupt to launder their ill-gotten gains. However, there are concrete measures that make it significantly more difficult for the corrupt to stash their dirty money in real estate.

Announcing the theme for the 19th edition of the International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC)

Designing 2030: Truth, Trust & Transparency

Protecting Africa’s wildlife from corruption

When they deliberate over amendments to the global wildlife trade regime, CoP18 must address impunity for illegal timber trafficking in Africa as a matter of high priority.

How the US can help Mongolia get to grips with corruption

A series of bi-lateral meetings and a proposed trade agreement present an opportunity for the US to promote rule of law and an independent judiciary in Mongolia.

Blood diamonds and land corruption in Sierra Leone

A community in Sierra Leone has created powerful short videos documenting their experiences of corruption, forced evictions and a botched resettlement programme at the hands of a multinational diamond mining company.

Countries must be more transparent when investigating transnational corruption

Supervisory and justice systems should be transparent and accountable so that the public can assess their performance.

Resilient institutions

Reducing corruption is an important component of the sustainable development agenda, and one that all state parties have an obligation to address. Although corruption is often thought of as a ‘third-world problem’, institutions in the Global North play an important role in the corruption cycle, and are therefore an essential part of the solutions.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media