The Ghana Football Association (GFA) Ethics Committee has dismissed a case of corruption and bribery against its former spokesperson Mr Ibrahim Sannie Daara.
Mr Daara was facing the charges after an investigative documentary dubbed Number 12 alleged that he received a bribe to influence a national team call-up for former Hearts of Oak skipper Thomas Abbey.
“The Ethics Committee concluded that there was insufficient evidence to support the allegation of acts of bribery and corruption on the part of Mr. Ibrahim Sannie Daara”, the GFA Ethics Committee stated in its decision signed by Chairperson, Ms Phyllis M. Christian, Esq.
Other members of the Adjudicatory Chamber of the Ethics Committee are Dr Charles Takyl and Mrs Linda Ofori-Kwalo.
Number 12, a documentary of corruption in African football produced by Tiger Eye PI and investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas premiered four years ago on June 6, 2018.
Mr Daara was alleged to have been offered and accepted money from agents of Tiger Eye Pl (producers of the documentary), contrary to Article 20.1(b) of the GFA Code of Ethics following the airing of the Number 12 Documentary, which purported to expose corruption in football in Ghana.
The Investigatory Chamber of the GFA Ethics Committee, Chaired by Dr Isaac Annan Esq. opened a preliminary investigation into the allegations of ethical breaches.
According to a GFA statement, the Investigatory Chamber took steps within its power to obtain the necessary evidence to support or refute the charges preferred against Mr Daara. However, the Ethics Committee was unable to contact one key witness, Mr Joshua Acquah.
“All efforts to find or reach Joshua Acquah were unsuccessful. The Ethics Committee found that from the video evidence and transcript Mr. Daara had indeed met with two persons, ostensibly Acquah and an individual referring to himself as ‘Alhassan (Manager of Thomas Abbey),” the GFA statement said.
“The two requested that Mr Daara could assist Thomas Abbey with a call-up into the then CHAN Team. In his utterances, Mr Daara was heard advising the persons present to ensure that Thomas Abbey stays professional and that any player who does well a coach would call him”.
The Committee said beyond the possibility that Mr Daara was merely being polite, there was no evidence that he accepted the bribe.
“While the voice-over in the edited Documentary indicated that Mr Daara had directed that the money be given to an acquaintance of his the EC found no evidence to support this claim,” the statement said.
“There was no evidence of the person who purportedly collected the monies on behalf of Mr Daara as proffered in the Documentary or provided to the Investigatory Chamber to tip the scales in favour of the accusation.In the opinion of the Ethics Committee, to go by the voice-over alone would have been to speculate on hypotheticals.
“Therefore, the Committee assessed the evidence presented in the two videos, alongside the transcript, by viewing, listening and discerning the points of variation to discount or validate the assertion made by the voice-over.
“Further, it endeavoured to obtain critical testamentary information from the witnesses, as well as from the GFA, and took steps to assess, analyze and consider this information against the charges preferred against Mr. Daara”.
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