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Restore our national identity-Nyantekyi

By Eric Ekow Okotah

6/15/2012 9:33:00 PM -

Dear Mr Kwesi Nyantekyi

Am very uncomfortable writing to you at this very difficult time when Ghana, Ghana Football Association (GFA) and the entire football fraternity are mourning the late former Vice President of the GFA, Jordan Anagbla. But i did not have any option I watch the European Cup. Ghana has lost a very vocal , strong and good administrator of the GFA as well as Tudu Mighty Jets

Ghanaians deserve some explanation from the GFA how the decision was made for the Blacks Stars to change their tradition yellow jersey combined with the rest of our national flag colors to the uniforms they are usinjg now. You were elected into office to serve the interest of Ghanaians and not the GFA and therefore we demand answers

Traditionally almost every team and national team are identified by the colors of their national flag turn into their jersey and that is their identity as they approach the field of play. Locally Asante Kotoko wears red, Accra Hearts of Oak will have rainbow design somewhere in whatever dominates what they are wearing.Accra Great Olympics has blue and white, Cape Coast Dwarfs green and yellow Cornerstones in the days spot black and white among countless teams. I remember in the early 1980s Hesse Odametten travelled with the Black Stars for a tournment in Seoul, South Korea, he returned with a set of jersey he donated to his team. It was an all white jersey with the rainbow running down the sides. Another time in the same period, Hearts wore an all green outfit in an FA reply Cup Finals with Real Tamale United,this jersey also had the rainbow colors all over. Kotoko will always wear dominant red color of different fabric and designs. On the African continent, you easily identify Togo, Nigeria, Cote d'Ivoire, ,Egypt, Algeria, Libya, Tunisia, Cameroun,Senegal, Mali ,Zambia, South Africa, Angola,the list goes unending .Lets take a tour of the Latin America,where Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay,Ecuador among others all portray their national colors with their jerseys for VERY GOOD REASONS. In Europe the story is no different as France, England, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Denmark , Sweden all showcast and with great pride their national identity.

In the US where the basketball teams are not nationally incline, one can identify Lakers, Heat, Spurs,Knicks, Thunder, Celtics ,Mavericks,Bulls with their team colors for both home and away why not a powerful soccer nation like Ghana. What was our interest in the deal that we could not be firm like the other African countries who refused to sell or give away our national identity.

Ghana used to play with their yellow outfits at home and the all white as an away jersey until recently when the GFA in their wisdom decided that Ghana uses this awful jersey is alien to our national colors and identity.

Just before the 2006 World Cup in Germany, Ghana represented by the GFA signed a deal with Puma to provide them sports kits over a certain period. That was an excellent innovation to have a sports manufacturer sponsor the team but there was a piece of our national identity that was missing. It was not just a shame and disgrace but the national identity was completely sold for nothing during the negotiation. Am really concern about the national identity because countries like Cote d Ivoire, Cameroun, Togo were all part of the deal with Puma butmanaged to maintained their national identity. Its sad and embarassing since the UEFA Europe 12 started because without knowning the teams playing or players,any soccer fan can easily speculate that this is Denmark,Spain,Sweden ,England ,Russia , Italy just by the color of their jerseys. Can the same be said about Ghana from afar.

I believe and know for a fact that Nyantekyi's predecessors like Ohene Djan, Lawton Ackah Ayensu and Zac Bentum among others were guided by nationalism, patriotism and sense of pride for the national colors identity when they decided on the jersey. Most African countries till this day have maintain their national flag colors for their jerseys. I totally agree that the world is changing and the Ghanaian jersey could be designed for us to be abreast with modern fashion but not to CHANGE the colors and erode our identity.

The Nyantekyi led GFA has really undermined the integrity, intelligency and sense pride of our forefathers who fought with their blood to achieve the foundation on which we are standing today. Our parochial and person interest is always above that of the nation, otherwise what will be the rational behind trading the traditional national identity for such an ugly jersey . The white home jersey is missing the red,gold and green while the red away shirt is also missing the green all together. A very good friend once told me that the same knowledge ,patriotism and pride have motivated other leaders to improve the lifes and conditions of their citizenry but in the case Ghana, selfishness,greed ,public theft is the order of the day to the detriment of Mother Ghana.

I would encourage the GFA that when the time comes to renew the Puma, contract they should be guided and mindful of our national identity and the colors in our flag to enable them make a wise decision .Ghana Black Stars should be identified just like the other African countries who append their signature to a similar deal. Please Kwesi Nyantekyi restore our national identity.

Disclaimer: "The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article." © Eric Ekow Okotah.