61-year-old Malagasy administrator Ahmad Ahmad has returned as the Confederation of African Football president after a ruling by the the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas).
Ahmad was banned by Fifa in November for five years after football’s world governing body found him to have breached several of its ethics codes.
The Malagasy appealed his decision at Cas, which issued a preliminary ruling on Friday.
Ahmad is still ineligible to contest Caf’s presidential elections in March however, since the Cas decision came after both the Caf’s Governance Committee and Fifa’s Review Committee met earlier this week to discuss the eligibility of candidates.
Cas says it will hear Ahmad’s appeal in full on 2 March, with a decision issued before the Caf presidential elections on 12 March.
“Due to a risk of irreparable harm for Mr Ahmad if the disciplinary sanction is maintained during the period prior to the Caf elections, the Cas panel has upheld the request to temporarily stay the effects of the [Fifa ban],” Cas, sport’s highest legal body, said in a statement.
This effective suspension of the Fifa ruling will be in place ‘until the day that the final Cas award is issued.’
Since he was banned when Fifa met on Tuesday and Caf on Thursday, Ahmad was deemed ineligible to run.