“Ghanaians don’t hate corruption, they hate it when they are not benefiting from it” have seen this on Social Media recently but I don’t know the brain behind it, my greetings to the person who owns this. It describes the attitude of Ghanaians perfectly.
On June 6, 2018, I was part of the numerous Ghanaians who trekked to the Accra International Conference Center for the premiere of the Number 12 exposé. The atmosphere was charged, the crowd was one that I had struggle to see at Ghana Premier League centers.
The exposé briefly shown how referees were bribed to influence outcome of competitive matches, how some officials take bribes to influence player selection to the national team. Almost everything shown in the video were already perception of some football loving fans.
The then Ghana Football Association President, Kwesi Nyantakyi resigned from his post at FIFA and CAF days after the exposé was premiered. After some back and forth, he was handed a lifetime ban by FIFA.
The rots in Ghana Football was removed, the game took a different direction, all referees who took bribes were banned, new referees were trained, the believe was that fans will go to stadia to watch their local teams play, hooliganism will stop because fans will have trust in referees.
Fast-forward a year, what is the case? Are we having good attendance at league centers? Do fans trust referees now? Are we not having cases of hooliganism at league centers? Your guess should be as good as mine.
Sekondi Hasaacas decided not to continue their game against Skyy FC at Daboase because of what they labelled as poor officiating in the Normalization Committee Special Tournament. Referees were chased at Dormaa by fans of Aduana Stars after they were held to a goalless draw by Medeama, the examples are countless.
Ghana Football after the expose has been the same, nothing has changed, it will remain so if all stakeholders don’t change their attitudes.
By Francis Hema