New allegations that two FIFA executive committee members were paid $1.5m (€1m) to vote for Qatar’s 2022 World Cup bid emerged today.
John Whittingdale, chairman of the committee, said he would now be writing to FIFA president Sepp Blatter to launch an investigation into the evidence "as a matter of urgency".
The shock claims were highlighted in the UK by MPs at the culture, media and sport committee in the House of Commons.
Tory MP Damian Collins said that evidence submitted by the Sunday Times, which the committee will publish, claimed that FIFA vice-president Issa Hayatou from Cameroon and Jacques Anouma from the Ivory Coast were paid €1.5m (€1m) by Qatar.
FIFA’s ethics committee last year banned two other executive committee members after a Sunday Times investigation into World Cup bidding.
Collins said: “The Sunday Times’ submission, and this is to be published by us later, claims that $1.5m was paid to FIFA executive committee members Issa Hayatou and Jacques Anouma who went on to vote for Qatar.”
Collins said the submission claimed Qatar specifically employed a fixer to arrange deals with African members for their votes.
Former Football Association and England 2018 chairman Lord Triesman later gave evidence of "improper and unethical" behaviour by four other executive committee members.
He said FIFA vice-president Jack Warner asked for money – suggested to be £2.5m (€2.8m) – to build an education centre in Trinidad with the cash to be channelled through him, and later £500,000 (€569,000) to buy Haiti’s World Cup TV rights for the earthquake-hit nation, also to go through Warner.
Paraguay’s FIFA member Nicolas Leoz asked for a knighthood while Brazil’s FIFA member Ricardo Terra Teixeira asked Triesman to “come and tell me what you have got for me”.
Thailand’s FIFA member Worawi Makudi wanted to be given the TV rights to a friendly between England and the Thai national team, said Triesman.
He added: “These were some of the things that were put to me personally, sometimes in the presence of others, which in my view did not represent proper and ethical behaviour on the part of members of the executive committee.”
Asked why he did not report the incidents to FIFA, Triesman said he feared that would damage the England bid but admitted he should have done so and pushed for action.
“The point was not pressed,” he said. “And I think, in retrospect, we would have burned off our chances. In retrospect that was not the right view to take and I accept that.”
Triesman added that he would undertake to provide his evidence to any FIFA inquiry.
In relation to the claims about payments made by Qatar 2022, Mike Lee, the London-based public relations consultant who worked on Qatar's bid, said he was unaware of any payments being made.
Lee, formerly communications director of the Premier League, UEFA and London’s 2012 Olympic bid, told MPs: “I was working at the highest level of that bid and talking at length with the chairman and CEO and saw no evidence of any of these allegations.
“My experience is I would have had a sense if such things were going on and I had no sense of that.”