a severe interim audit report for the entire governance of the FFF

It is an understatement to say that the elected officials of the French Football Federation (FFF) were impatiently awaiting this document. On Monday, January 30, the General Inspectorate for Education, Sport and Research (IGESR) sent the authorities of the body its provisional audit report, entitled “Control of the management of the FFF and compliance with the obligations which relate to it”.

This report was divided into three “slices”: a version was sent to Philippe Diallo, interim boss of the FFF, and to the Minister of Sports, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra; another to Noël Le Graët, “withdrawn” president of the federation; and a third to Florence Hardouin, the general manager laid off as a precautionary measure, on January 11.

The world had access to the thirty-two-page version sent to Philippe Diallo, who immediately forwarded it to the members of the executive committee. The conclusions of the inspection mission are very severe for Noël Le Graët, in office since 2011.

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“The mission considers that, given his behavior towards women, his public statements and the failures of the governance of the FFF, Mr. Le Graët no longer has the necessary legitimacy to administer and represent French football, write the inspectors, who heard 103 people in four months. The executive committee has the capacity, by a majority of the votes of its members, to decide on the holding of an extraordinary general meeting, which would then have the power to vote for the dismissal of the president in office, as well as of all the members of the committee elected from its list in March 2021.”

“Criminal qualification”

“The hearings conducted by the mission brought to light a problematic attitude of Mr. Le Graët towards women which can be qualified at the very least as sexist, develop the IGESR inspectors. Even if he denies it by invoking a benevolent paternalism from another era, his behavior cannot be considered today as respectful of the dignity of these people and in conformity with the obligation of exemplarity expected from of a delegate federation president. The mission also collected several testimonies relating to the actions of Mr. Le Graët likely to receive a criminal qualification. »

The inspectors recall having issued a report to justice on January 13, under article 40 of the code of criminal procedure. This led the Paris prosecutor’s office to open, on January 16, a preliminary investigation against Mr. Le Graët for “moral and sexual harassment”.

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