Gov’t Stops 2 GFA Officials From Flying To Russia
Reliable information reaching THE PUBLISHER indicates that government has blocked two officials of the Ghana Football Association from flying to Russia to take part in an election to select the destination for the next World Cup.
The identities of the officials are yet to be confirmed but the block comes after government announced it is taking steps to dissolve the association which has been embroiled in a bribery and corruption scandal.
The scandal has claimed the GFA President Kwesi Nyantakyi who held a prized seat among the 36-member FIFA Council which supervises world football.
Kwesi Nyantakyi until his FIFA ban and resignation last Friday was expected to vote on behalf of Ghana when 211-member countries meet in Russia on June 13 to decide the 2026 host.
The hosting rights is between North American bid and Morroco with the North American bid, represented by Canada, seen as favourites. Morroco would bank a lot of hopes on its African connections where its 54 votes can be crucial.
President of Morocco’s Royal Football Federation was in Ghana last April to shore up support for the North African bid which would make it the second African country to host the tournament since South Africa in 2010.
The Moscow meeting next week is the first since 2010 when FIFA met to choose Qatar as the 2022 host.
Meanwhile, the Director-General of the Police Intelligence and Professional Standards (PIPS), COP Kofi Boakye, has been tasked to deal with a bribery scandal involving more than 70 referees and several officials.
The decision by the Executive Committee of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) comes after the explosive investigative documentary released by Investigative Journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
A statement signed by the Association’s General-Secretary, Isaac Addo, said “the conduct of the said Officials has been referred to the GFA Ethics Committee chaired by COP Kofi Boakye to go through the Judicial Process.”
It assured the public of not interfering in the works of PIPS and stressed that it would embrace any decision they might come out with.
With government taking steps to dissolve the entire Association, the FA announced it had dissolved the Referees Appointment Committee, adding that a five-member team had also been set up to meet government for what it called ‘reform talks’.
“A five member team comprising Messrs Kweku Eyiah (Leader), Benjamin Nab Eyison, Kurt Okraku (Spokesperson), Isaac Addo and Samuel Opoku Nti has been tasked to meet Government for a resolution of the current impasse as well as draw up a program for lasting reforms,” the statement mentioned.
The Association further assured the general public that it shall take all legitimate steps to restore confidence and trust in the game and apologized unconditionally to the nation and all stake holders.
By: Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum