Former Vice President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) and Director of Accra Great Olympics, Fred Pappoe, has admitted that the rot that has been uncovered at the GFA is the result of long years of inaction by members of the Association.
“Quite a number of us have slept on our jobs and it’s a fact that should be accepted. We allowed [underhand dealings and corruption] to have festered for far too long,” he said.
He, however, blamed the lack of action to stem the festering corruption at the GFA on a general ineffective system that is characterised by poor structures and irresponsive regulations.
Speaking on Multi TV’s current affairs programme, PM Express, Tuesday evening, Mr Pappoe said in most instances, the system failed to look into reports of underhand dealings, and if it does, officials with responsibility to trigger corrective measures “choose not to or choose to do it in a way which is not optimal.”
Mr Pappoe was commenting on an ongoing process by the government, led by the Attorney-General, Gloria Akuffo, to dissolve the GFA following an exposé by the controversial investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
An Accra High Court on Tuesday granted an injunction by Ms Akuffo, restraining officials of the GFA from carrying out all official activities.
Attorney-General, Gloria Akuffo
The 10-day injunction is part of the government’s efforts to dissolve the GFA and restructure it to restore public confidence in the game.
The exposé, which was compiled into a video documentary, and released for public viewing last week showed African football officials, including 77 referees and former President of the GFA, Kwesi Nyantakyi, allegedly taking bribes.
The documentary generated widespread uproar and prompted the government to start the process to dissolve the FA.
Mr Nyantakyi has since resigned after he was suspended by world football’s governing body FIFA.
Fresh start presents uncertainties
The dissolution of the GFA, according to the government will present a reliable opportunity for a fresh start that will rid Association of deep-seated corruption.
But Mr Pappoe said although the objective of the dissolution is commendable, it presents an uncertain future for the entire football union in Ghana.
“Ideally that [fresh start] will be okay but we have not had the experience of a fresh start before. If we were to start afresh [which team] is going to be in the premier division? [Which team] will be in the second division? [Which team] is going to be in division one? There are quite a whole lot of practical issues. I cannot begin to comprehend or just imagine,” he said.