Cameroon have been rocked by a fresh age fraud scandal after 21 members of their Under-17 squad were disqualified over the issue.
Recall that Cameroon’s football federation had summoned 44 players from eight different clubs for a hearing into alleged age or identity cheating back in the summer, with president Samuel Eto’o expected to end the problem in the African country.
Now Eto’o has been dealt another setback in his bid to end age fraud crisis after the majority of players selected for this year’s UNIFACC tournament – contested by the Under-17 sides of Central African Football Federations’ Union countries – were disqualified after failing MRI tests.
The tests are used to determine a player’s age by scanning their wrists and measuring bone growth.
A Cameroon statement read: ‘The Cameroonian Football Federation informs public opinion that as part of the preparations for the UNIFFAC Limbe 2023 tournament, qualifying for the next African U17 Nations Championship, 21 players out of the 30 currently on training have failed at the outcome of the MRI tests.
‘They were immediately removed from the group. Steps were immediately taken for their replacement.
‘This action is the result of strict instructions given by the President of FECAFOOT acting under the mandate of the COMEX, in order to put an end to the tampering with civil status records which have, in the past, tarnished the image of the apex body of the Cameroon football. FECAFOOT urges all actors, in particular educators, to ensure that the ages by category are respected.’