Someone at the Castle would have to offer the whole nation an explanation for bringing Ghana football into disrepute. By asking the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to withdraw its preferred candidate to contest the vacant Confederation of African Football (CAF) executive position, in favour of a Castle nominee, the Government House was bullying those who administer the game on behalf of the teeming mass of Ghanaians.
The seat of government has also openly advertised its interference in the administration of football in this republic.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that interference in football administration by government officials is frowned upon by the game’s international governing body, the Federation Internationale de Football Associations (FIFA), and abhorred by CAF.
The irony of it all is that President John Evans Atta Mills, and his senior aides at the Government House, are in a position to be abreast with the legal regime in international sports. The President was at one point in time Chairman of the National Sports Council. He was also, for several years, Board Chairman of Accra Hearts of Oak, the oldest existing football club in this nation.
His Chief of Staff, Martey Newman, was also Secretary-General of the Ghana Olympic Committee. Under normal circumstances, the two powerful state officials should be the fountain of wisdom in international sporting relations.
That is why The Chronicle is worried about that the perception beginning to form in this country, that the Atta Mills administration was out to undermine sports promotion, apparently, because some personalities at the Castle do not appear to approve of sports administrators who do not tow party lines.
The Chronicle is getting disturbing information that the plot to humiliate the GFA, and bring the game in Ghana into disrepute, was hatched from the Office of the President. A usually reliable source at the Government House has informed this paper that it was the Secretary to the President, who ordered the Minister of Sports, Akua Sena Dansua, to issue a fiat on the GFA to withdraw the name of its President, Kwesi Nyantakyi, and replace him with Abedi Ayew Pele.
We note with satisfaction that both Abedi Pele and Kwesi Nyantakyi are well armed to represent Ghana football on CAF effectively, but we do not approve of the clandestine means to jettison the President of the GFA, though.
We deem this development grave for Ghana football. Already, the failure of the state to honour its obligation to players in all the eight national teams is creating problems for followers of the game.
The impression is crystallizing that the Government House was deliberately creating a scenario, where those who administer the game on behalf of the state, would be seen in a bad light.
When the Black Stars failed to beat Sudan in that dour African Cup qualifier at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi not too long ago, many Ghanaians were not happy with the GFA.
If the truth should be told, the failure of the Ghanaian players to perform had everything to do with lack of motivation resulting from the failure of the state to honour its financial obligations to the players.
Last week, the women’s national team, the Black Queens, let the country down terribly in the African Women’s Cup tournament in South Africa. The Black Queens could only manage a solitary win against Algeria, by every standard, minnows in the African women’s game.
We are slowly reaching the stage, where it would not be out of place to infer that someone at the Castle was deliberately putting asunder, what Ghana football has put together.
When Ghana returned from the 2010 World Cup in South Africa as one of the eight leading footballing nations on earth, the positive impact rubbed off on all of us at the centre of the earth. Authorities would do well to help Ghana football build on this image.