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Ghana Football Officials in Nightmare After Journalist’s Implicating Video Gets FA’s Boss Arrested –The Story so Far

It’s hoped all will come clear June 6th when under-cover journalist Anas Areneyaw Anas tongue-wagging video is premiered. But for now, uncertainty lingers with shock abound as football administrators in Accra fear for not only their reputation but the axe too. There is already growing agitation amongst football lovers in the wake of this latest saga dubbed the biggest to hit the Ghanaian FA.

The drama is a massive hit on account it involves names of the West Africa country’s first gentleman Nana Akufo-Addo and the Ghana’s Football Association boss Kwasi Nyantakyi.

The latter is being accused of using the president’s name fraudulently. Nyantakyi is in hot water after he was caught hinting to undercover reporters posing as potential business partners how he would peddle around his connection with the president and his vice.

The discussion, caught all on camera, has inevitably raised question marks over the FA supremo’s integrity.

President Nana was left seething when shown bit parts of the footage and quickly notified the Central Investigations Department (CID) ordering for a probing and Kwasi’s immediate arrest.

Nyantakyi, a lawyer-cum banker and FIFA council member, upon learning of the disturbing revelations, returned from Morocco where he was attending a football seminar, and turned himself in to police.

He was subjected to intense grilling and held for up to five hours at the police headquarters before a search was conducted in his house leading authorities to confiscate his phones and laptops. The CID department had asked anyone with information regarding the saga to submit it, local reports in Accra say.

This is not the first time the football head is being mired in a web of controversy with allegations of match-fixing also directed at him in an under-cover investigation by The Telegraph and Channel4 in 2014.

The Reported Cause of Kawsi’s Arrest

The football chief’s apprehension which stormed Ghana’s football fraternity on Tuesday, it’s believed, was plotted by a number of disgruntled individuals including journalists displeased with Kawsi’s style of administration.

At the forefront of the hatch, it is said, is an erstwhile bosom now turned adversary of the former West African Football Zone B chairman, ardent on unseating the lawyer as Ghana FA’s supremo.

Capitalizing on the FIFA council member’s desperation to secure sponsors for the Ghanaian football league, the group arranged few persons to pose as potential investors.

The unsuspecting Kawsi, a tabloid in Ghana claims, then met the undercover agents in faraway Miami.

Intrigued by the posers’ intention to invest in Ghanaian football and unbeknown to him details of the meeting was being filmed, Nyantakyi, it is purported, revealed to the agents that they could bring in any amount of money without qualms provided he’s given $5m to dash to president Nana Akufor and his deputy.

Strangely enough, neither was of cash nor cheque was doled out to Kwasi in Miami.

Armed with evidence to build on a case, the posers then immediately proceeded to contact journalist Anas who requested for the recordings and included it in his investigative video, Today, another paper in Ghana reports.

This trajectory was followed by Kwasi’s arrest who has since been granted bail with probing still ongoing.

The Ghana Football Association is an autonomous body as per FIFA regulations, and the latest episode provokes the question whether the president’s arrest isn’t meddling to some extent and political inference on a larger scale.

World football governing entity, Fifa, are yet to issue a statement over the furore.

There is more to the saga than meets the eye pundits akin with Ghanaian football politics say with many growing suspicious over Nana’s move to take it upon himself to order for Kwasi investigation.

Opposition party National Democratic Congress (NDC) regional chairman Allotey Jacobs gave weight to this theory.

Questioning the rationale behind the head of state’s “rushing” to report on a tape yet to be fully aired, Jacobs says the President would have merely waited or take up a different initiative such as privately interrogate the embattled GFA boss rather than raise alarm.

Wave of Nervousness

The circling Anas footage has inevitably rendered many notable football heads unsettled. One such man is Kudjoo Fainoo, chairman of the Ghana League Clubs Association (GLCA).

Wary over scale of the investigations, Fainoo admits to Ghanasoccernet that the current scenario is hugely unsettling but vowed to, if any, come out of it unscathed.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“As I speak to you, I’m not even sure of myself, being in football all this while. I don’t know the scope of the investigation but since it is involving football administrators, I will have to position myself very well to make sure that I come out clean,”[/perfectpullquote]

he said.

GFA Backing Under-fire Boss

As anticipated, the Ghanaian FA Thursday night released a dispatch sticking by their boss.

Addressing the lawyer ‘an abiding citizen’, the football association says nothing has changed regarding its leadership.

“On Tuesday 22nd May 2018 there was an activation of the relevant state institutions to probe into an issue relating to the President of the Ghana Football Association, Mr Kwesi Nyaktakyi in the yet-to-be released documentary by Anas Aremeyaw Anas. Though the President of the GFA was on official duties outside the country, he cut his trip short and returned to Ghana on 23rd May 2018,” the release read.

Dwelling further, the communiqué said: “On his arrival he was escorted to the CID Headquarters where he was interrogated, a statement taken and subsequently granted bail.

Presently he is helping the police with their investigations.The President remains innocent until he is proven guilty of all charges levelled against him.

The GFA President being a law abiding citizen respects the law, he is not a flight risk and has indicated his willingness and availability to the investigative authority anytime he is required to do so.

Following a meeting of the Executive Committee of the GFA on Thursday, the body wishes to state that nothing has changed in terms of the GFA hierarchy and Mr. Nyantakyi still remains the President of the Ghana Football Association.

Any statement contrary to this must be disregarded.

We wish to re-iterate that Mr. Nyantakyi has the full support of the Executive Committee of the Ghana Football Association (GFA).

All offices and outlets of the GFA remain fully functional and we confirm that all scheduled activities of the federation continue without any hindrances.

We urge all our stakeholders and members to remain calm during this period.”

Operation ‘Save Ghana Football’

In the midst of the current scenario dogging football in the West African nation, a group of people are intent on taking to the streets under the tagging Save Ghana Football.

The unit, styling itself as Press Foundation, is planning to stage a nationwide protest, calling for all those captured in the footage – dubbed Video Number Twelve -to be prosecuted.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“For the first time we have evidence that is impeccable so it is time Ghanaians rise up and tell everyone and the Government that we need to save Ghana Football,”[/perfectpullquote]

Listowell Awambe Burkason, member of the group says.

Whistle-blower Anas Not Happy with Ghana’s President Nana

Anas Aremeyaw Anas, the journalist behind the saga is not pleased with Ghana’s president Nana Akufor-Addo’s decision to go public with the video.

Anas and his Tiger Eye team agreed to show portions of the footage concerning the president and his deputy but not until after a confidential agreement was signed.

But Nana went ahead to order for the arrest of Kawsi before the video’s scheduled date of airing (June 6th2018), a thing Anas and his team consider breach of agreement.

The video is a collaborative work of Anas and the BBC aimed at combating corruption in football.

Suspense this moment hovers in Ghana’s football sector.


Feature Photo: Ghana’s FA boss Kawsi , Journalist Ans (middle)   and Ghana’s president Nana

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