All too soon, the Ghana Football Association (GFA) will tomorrow, barring any legal blockage, be electing a brand new President to head one of the most controversial government bodies in Ghana. Even though the job of GFA president is supposed to some sort of service for God and country, the contest is virtually becoming a life and death affair, with some aspirants going to court to seek injunction on the election.
Interestingly, only 120 people (who are considered to be the football people in Ghana) have the power to decide the destiny of the game, and thus determine who heads the authority.
Your authoritative NEW PUBLISHER had, over the last couple of weeks, followed the debates and presentations by the six contestants, and had taken the following mental notes:
Fred Papoe: Very Confident
The board member of Ghana’s ‘wonder club’, Accra Great Olympics, seems very confident. Being the vice president of the GFA from 2006 to 2012 and also the Black Stars management committee from 2006 to 2010, he seems to know the in and out of the game.
No doubt he received Medal Awards Excellence in Sports from both Presidents Kuffour and Atta Mills for his contribution to the growth of Ghana football.
George Afriyie: Already In Charge
He plays the dual role of CEO at Liberty Professionals and Okyeman Planners, and also had stints with Accra Great Olympics, the defunct All Blacks, the Black Meteors and Black Stars as administrator. Even before the elections, Asante Kotoko and other teams have thrown their weights behind him. He promises to restore confidence in Ghana football and refereeing.
George Ankoma Mensah: Very Much On Top Of The Issues.
He seems to have the most exposure. He was the director of Sports for Assist International Limited, the company that sponsored the Black Maidens to qualify for the 2008 World Cup. He is particular about funding for the FA, and appears to be very much on top of football matters.
Nana Yaw Amponsah: Knowledgeable And Broad Minded.
He is a holder a Master’s Degree in Sports Law and Practice from the Leicester DE Monort University, UK, and his experience as an agent and intermediary gives him an edge.
He has good background in Sports Law and Ethics. He can raise a million dollars for the FA with the snap of the finger. Digitization is his key word, and believes football is no longer a mere recreational activity, but a multi-billion dollar business.
Amanda Clinton: Cannot Be Underestimated.
A win for her will be a record. The 22-year-old lawyer had served as a state attorney for 3 and half years. Her association with Ghana football came in the aftermath of the Anas’ Number12 documentary when she was engaged by the then Executive Committee in their bid to prevent the government from winding down the GFA.
Kurt Okraku: Always Precise And Straight To The Point.
His strong point is that he doesn’t beat about the bush. He is spot on, and believes he is the game changer.
The GIJ trained journalist and product of the University of Liverpool holds a Masters Degree in Football Management, and is the owner of Dreams FC.
Well, good speeches are nice, but very often, they don’t match the deeds.
Like many Ghanaians, THE NEW PUBLISHER expects that the new leadership will rethink, act differently, and stop behaving as if football in the country is all about 120 people.
May the best candidate win.