Chris Opoku: FIFA Must Not Prevent Ghana From Demanding Accountability

The Editor of Footy-Ghana.com, Christopher Opoku, has criticised the constant threat of a FIFA ban when a country demands accountability from its football association.

“It’s not right for FIFA to, as it were, put a stop to certain measures to demand accountability,” he said.

He made this known when he appeared before the Presidential Commission which has been set up to investigate Ghana’s participation at the Brazil 2014 World Cup.

According to Opoku, a collaborative effort between FIFA, football associations and their respective states is necessary for the development of the game.

This, he said, was because governments spend a lot of money supporting the national teams.

“It is a marriage of convenience. One cannot do without the other. In Ghana’s case, yes there are sponsors that would pump money into the game, and government always comes in either to pre-finance, or in the case of the African nations tournament for example, they end up taking up all the expenses.

“And when you consider that the prize money for winning the AFCON is negligible compared to the amount of money the state will spend in preparing a nation for the tournament and you do an aggregation of the activities of every national team over four years, I do believe that it is not right for FIFA to, as it were, put a stop to certain attempts to either demand accountability or a look at the management.”

Touching on his role as Spokesperson for the Brazil 2014 media committee, Opoku said the Sports Ministry offered him the appointment by “word of mouth”, but he was not able to perform that duty because no information was given to him.

“I will humbly stress that the appointment was done by hand of mouth. I asked for terms of references, letters of appointments. I had complains about that fact that no information was given to me even though I had been informed by the minister that I was supposed to be the spokesperson,” he said.

Opoku added the Ministry later offered to sponsor him to Brazil for the World Cup, but he rejected the invitation on the grounds that he had not done enough in his work as Spokesman of the media committee to warrant the offer.

He said though he was supposed to be the mouthpiece over every decision taken by all the 6 committees that were working to ensure that Ghana successfully participates at the Brazil 2014, he was kept in the dark about the decisions that were taken.

Opoku went on to recommend to the commission that in future, a certain percentage of bonuses paid to the Black Stars should be kept aside to develop football at the grassroots.

He said the money will go a long way to help develop talent that will replace the current crop of Black Stars players in future.

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