Panafrican News Agency

Anger, shock after video on corruption in Ghana hits the screen

Accra, Ghana (PANA) - Anger, shock, disappointment, frustration, astonishment. These were some of the words used by some of the hundreds of people who watched a documentary by Ghana's investigative journalist Anana Aremeyaw Anas on Wednesday night that uncovered the rot in Ghana football.

The video dubbed #Number12, which was premiered at the Accra International Conference Centre, also has a political angle as the President of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi, the main culprit, is seen and heard promising that he could influence President Nana Akufo-Addo, vice president Mahamudu Bawumia, ministers and government officials with money. The video was put together after two years of undercover investigation.

In one of the scenes, he is seen in a meeting with Anas' Tiger Eye PI collaborators, who posed as a businessmen, askng for $5 million for the President, $3 million for Vice President Bawumia, $2 million for Transport Minister, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah and $2 million for his deputy Anthony Karbo.

A very angry President Akufo-Addo, who was shown an excerpt of the video a few days ago, has already asked the Criminal Investigation Department of the Ghana Police Service to investigate the claims. Nyantakyi, who is also an official of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and FIFA was arrested when he arrived from an official trip to Morocco and is assisting in investigations.

President Akufo-Addo has said he "knows nothing" and is "astonished" by Nyantakyi's claims.

He also categorically denied ever discussing any business with Nyantakyi stressing: "It is completely false, it is completely false", President Akufo-Addo said in a recorded response.

Vice President Bawumia said he is "very sad" about the developments. He added that he has never sat with Nyantakyi to hold a business-related conversation.

In many sordid scenes, scores of referees were seen collecting bribes to influence decisions. Football administrators, staff of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) and National Sports Authority took money to influence coaches to call up players for the national football teams or give them playing time in matches, while some were involved in visa racketeering.

When Nyantakyi arranges for sponsorship for the Ghana Premier League, he works out a deal to cream off 20-25 per cent for a company, which would be set up, as payment for the one which negotiated the deal and that will be “cool money". "Once the deal is sorted, then you get your share and I get mine. We can work it out so we get 20-25%,” he told the undercover investigators.

Organisers of the screening of the video say there is an international angle to the investigation that sees football authorities in 11 African countries, including Gambia and Kenya, also caught on video taking bribes.

Former President John Mahama, who watched the video earlier, was visibly shaken by the revelation.

In the video posted on Anas’ Facebook page, Mr Mahama said the revelations may be the reason Ghana in recent years has struggled to remain relevant in football.
-0- PANA MA 7June2018