FIFA suspended President Sepp Blatter for 90 days following an ethics investigation.
The punishment comes in the wake of recent criminal proceedings opened up against Blatter in Switzerland and the spring arrests of more than a dozen persons employed by or affiliated with FIFA.
Soccer’s governing body explained in a statement on Thursday.
Today, in accordance with FIFA’s Code of Ethics, Joseph S. Blatter was relieved of all his duties as FIFA President following the decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber of the Independent Ethics Committee to provisionally ban him from all football activities on a national and international level.
Joseph S. Blatter, for the duration of the 90-day ban, is not allowed to represent FIFA in any capacity, act on the organisation’s behalf, or communicate to media or other stakeholders as a FIFA representative.
As mandated by article 32 (6) of the FIFA Statutes, Issa Hayatou, as the longest-serving vice-president on FIFA’s Executive Committee, will serve as Acting President of FIFA.
It was also announced that the Independent Chairman of the Adjudicatory Chamber of the Ethics Committee issued a provisional 90-day ban for FIFA’s Secretary General, Jérôme Valcke.
This decision follows FIFA’s announcement on 17 September 2015, that the organization had put Jérôme Valcke on leave and released him from his duties effective immediately. On that date, FIFA requested a formal investigation by the Ethics Committee.
All operational business matters will continue to be overseen by Markus Kattner, Acting Secretary General.
The suspension may effectively end Blatter’s 17-year reign atop soccer’s governing body. With the punishment keeping 79-year-old away from the organization until January, and a special election designating his successor scheduled for the end of February, FIFA may decide to extend the punishment until it names a permanent successor.