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UNODC, FIFA partner on corruption, youth development

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United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, UNODC, and the World Football Governing body, FIFA, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, to cooperation to address threats posed by crime to sport.

The MoU, which was signed at UNODC’s Vienna-based headquarters by UNODC Executive Director Ghada Waly and FIFA President Gianni Infantino during the ‘Tackling Corruption and Crime in and through Sport’ event, also pledges to consider ways in which football can be used as a vehicle to strengthen youth resilience to crime and substance use through the provision of life skills training.

“Sports support the development of children and youth, and we need sports more than ever in the COVID-19 recovery to make people healthier and happier, and bring jobs back. But in order to harness the power of sports we need to protect sports integrity,” said UNODC Executive Director Ghada Waly.

“I believe that FIFA, the international governing body of football, the world’s game, and the United Nations, the world’s organization, make formidable allies, and I am very pleased that UNODC and FIFA have joined forces by signing this Memorandum of Understanding to safeguard football and sporting events from corruption, promote youth crime prevention, and keep children and young athletes safe from violence and exploitation.”

“Since 2016, the new FIFA has taken significant strides in relation to good governance and in the area of football integrity, including the fight against match manipulation and safeguarding of children in football,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

“Today’s signing of the Memorandum of Understanding with UNODC is a milestone for the organisation and underlines the absolute commitment of the new FIFA and myself to a zero-tolerance policy on corruption in football: never again! It also shows our commitment to put football at the service of society and to use it as a tool to support the achievement of public policy objectives and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

“We are proud to have a partner like UNODC as we strive to strengthen further the integrity of football and to use the unique power of the beautiful game to promote values and life skills to foster youth development and crime prevention.”

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