CAF is the governing body of African football and was founded in 1957. The founding members are Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia and South Africa. With a membership of 54 Member Associations, the secretariat is based in Egypt.
At the FIFA Congress in 1954 held in Berne, Switzerland, it was voted to recognize Africa as a Confederation. This gave the continent the right to appoint its first representative to the FIFA Executive Committee and the member was Abdel Aziz Abdallah Salem of Egypt.
The wheels that led to the birth of CAF were actually set in motion outside Africa, in Lisbon, Portugal in June 1956. The Portuguese capital was playing host to the FIFA Congress, and it was the four African nations in attendance (Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia and South Africa) who carried the African confederation to the baptismal font by taking advantage of that gathering to discuss matters of common interest.
Following the FIFA Congress in Lisbon, the four nations resolved to convene again in Khartoum, Sudan, in February 1957 to draft statutes and to discuss the staging of the first Africa Cup of Nations. The historic meeting that confirmed the official establishment of CAF was held on 8 February 1957 at the Grand Hotel in Khartoum.
Following the adoption of the statutes, Abdel Aziz Abdallah Salem of Egypt was unanimously chosen as president, becoming the first president in the history of the confederation.
On 10 February 1957, after CAF maiden CAF General Assembly, the Sudanese capital witnessed the birth of the Africa Cup of Nations which was won by Egypt.
It would prove to be the start of an exhilarating adventure till this day with countless unforgettable moments along the way to help define the characteristics and traits associated with African football.
- Abdel Aziz Abdallah Salem (Egypt): 1957 – 1958
- Abdel Aziz Mostafa (Egypt): 1958 – 1968
- Abdel Halim Mohamed (Sudan): 1968 – 1972
- Ydnekatchew Tessema (Ethiopia): 1972 – 1987
- Abdel Halim Mohamed (Sudan): 1987 – 1988
- Issa Hayatou: (Cameroon): 1988 – 2017
- Ahmad Ahmad: (Madagascar: 2017 – 2021
- Patrice Motsepe: (South Africa) 2021 –