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Page last updated at 15:43 GMT, Saturday, 16 May 2009 16:43 UK

EFF boss Woldegiorgis steps down

Ethiopian football fans
Ethiopian football fans may soon be able to cheer their team once again

The head of the Ethiopian Football Federation, Dr Ashebir Woldegiorgis, resigned on Saturday moments before facing a motion of dismissal.

Dr Ashebir stepped down at a meeting that could be the beginning of a process leading to Ethiopia's readmission to world football.

Dr Ashebir was leading the faction of the EFF that was recognised by football's world governing body, Fifa.

In-fighting led to Fifa suspending the EFF after it failed to comply with a roadmap to normalise the problems at the federation.

The suspension saw Ethiopia thrown out of the 2010 World Cup qualifiers.

"I hereby announce my resignation. I only stayed in my position so that the the organisation's rules and regulations were not to be broken," Dr Ashebir told the EFF assembly.

Saturday's meeting was chaired by a three-man delegation from Fifa and the Confederation of African Football.

If the delegation gives a favourable report, Fifa will discuss the possible readmission of the EFF at its congress at the end of the month.

Under the Fifa roadmap, the EFF will now have to set up an electoral committee within seven days which in turn will hold elections within the next 45 days.

In July Fifa suspended the EFF after it failed to comply with the roadmap agreed in February 2008 aimed at normalising the situation of the federation.

The problems at the EFF began in January 2008, when its general assembly fired Dr Ashebir.

The assembly wanted to remove the president for what they said was the "dismal" record of Ethiopian football, and elected Ahmed Yasin to replace him.

However, the January meeting was not recognised by Fifa, who have been trying to find a solution ever since.

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see also
Ethiopia ban stays as talks fail
18 Nov 08 |  African
Ethiopia suspended by Fifa
29 Jul 08 |  African
Ethiopia problems set to continue
28 Mar 08 |  African
Ethiopia reject Fifa road-map
28 Feb 08 |  African

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