Ghana FA dissolved by government amid corruption allegations
Ghana's Football Association (GFA) has been dissolved by the country's government amid allegations of corruption and bribery.
Nana Akufo-Addo – the president of Ghana – made the decision Thursday after footage emerged from a documentary allegedly uncovering fraud and corruption under the leadership of GFA boss Kwesi Nyantakyi.
In the documentary 'When Greed and Corruption Become the Norm', Nyantakyi was pictured accepting a cash gift from an undercover reporter who was pretending to be a businessman.
The Ghanaian government is set to announce, "provisional measures to govern football activities in the country until a new body is duly formed".
"The Government is shocked and outraged at the contents of the recently-aired video documentary, which captures the investigation conducted into football administration by the journalist, Anasa Aremeyaw, titled 'Number 12': When Misconducted and Greed become the Norm," a statement – signed by Ghana's information minister Mustapha Amid – read.
"The documentary exposes the gross malfunctioning of the Ghana Football Association [GFA], characterised by the widespread fraud, corruption and bribery. As a result of the pervasive nature of the rot within GFA, government has decided as follows:
"The conduct of all officials of the GFA, together with that of the suspended Acting Director General of the National Sports Authority [NSA], Robert Sarfo Mensah, shown in the documentary to be involved in questionable, potentially criminal acts, is forthwith, referred to the Police for further investigation and appropriate action. The Police are to take all such relevant measures as are necessary to ensure that the contents of the documentary are rapidly and thoroughly investigated.
"Having regard to the widespread nature of the apparent rot involving top GFA officials, top NSA officials, match commissioners, football administrators and referees, government has decided to take immediate steps to have the GFA dissolved. Government will shortly, thereafter, announce provisional measures to govern football activities in the country, until a new body is duly formed; and
"Government will communicate these decisions to the Confederation of African Football and the Federation of International Football Association, and engage with them on these developments to chart a way forward for Ghana football."
Earlier on Thursday, the Ghana FA released a statement on the alleged acts of corruption, asking for a copy of the footage having not been consulted first.
In a statement signed by general secretary Isaac Addo, the FA said: "The GFA was not provided with an opportunity to watch the premiering of the documentary as it was neither provided with an advanced copy of the said documentary nor furnished with tickets by Tiger Eye PI to watch the airing.
"Though the GFA did not commission Tiger Eye PI to undertake this exercise and have not been provided with the opportunity of watching the documentary, we view the allegations circulating in the media very seriously and would wish to take immediate steps to address them.
"To this end we believe it's only fair and proper that Tiger Eye furnishes us with the said documentary and hereby request Tiger Eye as a matter of urgency to furnish us with all the recorded material on this documentary to enable us forward it to the appropriate quarters for further investigations.
"…The GFA wishes to place on record that, there will be no attempt of a cover-up or shield any of our members caught in alleged acts of corruption. The GFA wishes to assure all that as an institution it does not condone any manner of corrupt practices.
"We wish to put on record that eight months ago, we got evidence of some external influences seeking to manipulate matches in our various competitions. As soon as it became clear to us that we were facing the possibility of some external influences seeking to destroy the sanctity of the game in Ghana, we wrote to FIFA seeking assistance to help combat this menace.
"The action we took was in furtherance of the GFA's desire to fight against match manipulation and maintain the integrity of our game and federation. We received a full FIFA response few days later, with an action plan on how we can fight the menace of match manipulation through a roadmap for the implementation of the national integrity initiative. We are still working with FIFA Integrity Department to find the appropriate dates for the action to help educate our members on the dangers of this menace.
"The GFA will subsequently be undertaking a holistic review and continue with our reforms geared towards the enhancement of its operations in dealing with alleged acts of corruption in the game. We urge the football fraternity to remain calm and provide us with all the support we need as we bid to restore confidence and trust in our beautiful game."