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FIFA confirms AFCON postponement to 2022

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Joins African Union, WHO, CAF to in campaign against domestic violence

FIFA has confirmed that the African Cup of Nations, originally scheduled to hold in CamerooCOVID-19n in January next year, has been rescheduled for 2022.

The tournament, FIFA said, has been pushed back 12 months due to the global health crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, adding that the full schedule of dates will be announced at a later time.

The latest decision adds to a hectic year for global football.

Apart from the African Nations Cup, the 2022 World Cup will be held in Qatar, meaning other events, including the European leagues, will be heavily disrupted, with plenty of rescheduling.

Meanwhile, the world football governing body has disclosed that it is joining forces with the African Union, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to jointly address the issue of domestic violence by launching the #SafeHome campaign across the African continent.

The #SafeHome campaign was launched yesterday across Africa as part of a wider global initiative to raise awareness on domestic violence and child abuse.

The awareness videos feature nine football stars – Abel Xavier, Emmanuel Amuneke, Sarah Essam, Khalilou Fadiga, Geremi, Rabah Madjer, Lúcia Moçambique, Asisat Oshoala and Clémentine Touré.

In a statement made available to The Guardian, FIFA said the initiative is designed to support women and children victims of domestic violence, particularly as stay-at-home measures in response to COVID-19 have put them at greater risk.

“A number of African football stars are supporting the campaign via video awareness messages distributed on social and traditional media.

“The African Union-FIFA-CAF memorandum of understanding, which was concluded in February 2019, covers joint campaigns on topics of mutual interest and the promotion of gender equality, a key principle. Other areas of collaboration include education through football, sports integrity and safety and security at football matches,” the statement read.

FIFA President, Gianni Infantino said, “I am glad that today we can launch this campaign on the important topic of domestic violence, which is significantly exacerbated by COVID-19 lockdown conditions and movement restrictions, together with our partners, the African Union, WHO and CAF.”

Explaining the project, African Union Commissioner for Social Affairs, H.E. Amira Elfadil, said: ’’The African Union Commission is resolute and committed to the protection of women and girls. We recognise and align ourselves with FIFA, CAF and the World Health Organization and other stakeholders on the efforts aimed at preventing abuse and domestic-based violence through collaborative programming that links reconstruction, access to the continuum of service, addressing the underlying social norms and harmful practices that continue to perpetuate gender-based violence and inequality, as well as community awareness and empowerment. We align ourselves to leverage the popular appeal of football to raise awareness against domestic violence, particularly as stay-at-home measures in response to COVID-19 are in place.”


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