Rapheal Cubagee, a Sports Analyst has questioned why a middle income country like Ghana, whose national budget is supported by donor partners, is proposing a World Cup expenditure much higher than that of the donor countries.
He described as shameful the alleged $20million budget meant for Ghana’s participation at the 2014 World Cup to be held in Brazil whiles the country goes round the world seeking loans for developmental projects.
“…Adakabre, just consider the amount $20 million. Whiles the whole country, with the powers vested in a Minister sometimes flies around the World shopping for just a $5 million dollar loan. How come America…which boasts of arguably the largest economy worldwide is proposing a budget of $2 million while Ghana is said to be presenting $20m budget…“Would we go back to the foreign partners to continue financing our national budget?” he quizzed.
In his view, the proposed budget by the Ghana Football Association (GFA) exposes the kind of people at the helm of affairs at both the Sports Ministry and Football Association saying “if you see a dog keeping mute while its owner is being robbed, it could be that the dog knows the owner or the robber is work in partnership with the dog to share in the booty later” and “that is exactly how i see the situation being played out”.
Mr. Cubagee made these pronouncements on NEAT 100.9 FM during a discussion on the Ghana’s preparation for the World Cup in Brazil and the alleged $20m budget for the trip.
His comment comes on the heels of clamours from various groups, individuals and stakeholders for the Government, to transparently declare Ghana’s budget for the 2014 tournament.
It is speculated that the GFA submitted a provisional budget of $20 million for Brazil 2014, $500,000 more than the $19.5 million used to sponsor the 2010 World Cup campaign in South Africa.
Meanwhile, grapevine reports indicate the Black Stars are demanding $100,000 apiece as appearance fee for the 2014 World Cup.
A letter submitted to the GFA by Captain Asamoah Gyan on behalf of the national team players, justified the demand.
Each player was given $50,000 as appearance fee in the 2006 World Cup in Germany and $70,000 in the 2010 mundial in South Africa. If the Stars’ demand for Brazil 2014 is granted, they would be taking 30 percent more than they took for the 2006 tournament. The 23-man Ghana squad will thus bag $2.3 million just for appearing. The amount is tax-free.
Moments after the news went viral, some sports journalist were accused of envy, hence the publishing of the report to make the players look bad in the eyes of the public.
But touching on the news report, Raphael Cubagee however dismissed suggestions that the Sports Journalists who criticized the Black Stars playing body for requesting a $100,000 appearance fee did so because they are envious of them.
“…as at now, the final team has not been selected so who are the players (asking for this appearance fee)? The players have not said anything. Let any player come out to claim a Sport Journalist is jealous of their wealth….because Kwesi Appiah (Head Coach of the Black Stars) has not selected his final 23”.
“Every Ghanaian has the right to criticize even the president, so why does a footballer think he is above criticism?” he asked.