Football's governing body FIFA should set an example to the world by giving 10% of World Cup profits to the poor, a Venezuelan legislator has said.
"It would be stupendous news for the whole planet, which is in such need of good news," William Ojeda said in comments widely published by Venezuelan media on Saturday. "FIFA, which earns so much money from the organisation of the world event, should demonstrate with actions that its vision is not only monetary, and should channel at least 10% of its profits from the World Cup to help poor countries."
The independent parliamentarian, an early supporter of late socialist president Hugo Chavez who then split with the government but later also left the opposition, said the money should go to schools, homes, clinics and sports facilities. "It would be a great moral example," he added, praising Spanish club Barcelona who used to wear the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) logo on the front of their shirts instead of a corporate sponsor. They now have it on the back.
Though frequently accused of corruption, FIFA is officially a non-profit organization and does plough millions of dollars from World Cup revenues into grassroots football, especially in developing countries.
(Writing by Andrew Cawthorne; Additional reporting by Brian Homewood; editing by Justin Palmer)