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26.07.2005 Football News

Congress stalls decision on govt's rep on new FA

Congress stalls decision on govt's rep on new FA

Accra, July 26, GNA - An Emergency Congress of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) on Tuesday postponed a vote on whether to allow representatives of the Government on the new GFA structures.

The Congress, which was called to fine tune some queries raised by the FIFA, the world soccer controlling body, instead decided to refer the issue back to FIFA for further deliberations before taking any decision on it.

This came about after a passionate plea by Professor Kofi Kumado, a member of the three-man committee, set up by the Government to see how best a role could be carved out in the new football statutes yet to be approved by FIFA for the Government that is its biggest financier. He said though FIFA made it clear that it would not accommodate any representative from the Government in the administration of the game, it was important for all to realise the peculiar situation Ghana found itself.

Professor Kumado said any decision taken on the matter by delegates should try as much as possible to satisfy the two constituencies that football in Ghana was operating within, be it locally or internationally.

He said the present proposal suggested where the Government through the National Sports Council (NSC) would be allowed to nominate two representatives to the new Executive Committee and three to the Congress did not infringe much on FIFA statutes and a compromise could be found. Professor Kumado said all that was needed, was for the GFA to send a representative to FIFA to argue the stance of the GFA, as Ghana's situation was a peculiar one hence demanding special dispensation. "When we state our point very well, I see FIFA easily accommodating our situation to avoid the situation where the door will be shut on the biggest donor to the game."

The GFA at it's last Congress agreed to allow the NSC to nominate five representatives of, which two representatives would go to the yet to be constituted Executive Committee while the remaining other three would go to Congress.

Going by this development, it means that government's influence on the GFA administration would reduce from 40 per cent to eight per cent. But FIFA in a reply to this proposal from the last Congress reiterated its stance not to allow the representation of government in the decision-making structure of any of its affiliated bodies.

The latest move to send a delegation to FIFA appears to be a last ditch effort by Congress, Chaired by Justice Ato Ampiah to ensure that the door was not shut on the Government in the administration of soccer in the country.

The decision not to put the issue to vote by members of the Congress was after it became apparent that delegates appeared heading to vote in line with FIFA position that barred the Government to avert the situation where the country seen to be going against provisions in the global body's statues, which might have repercussion.

Among other decisions taken at the Congress was to bar members of the new Executive Committee, which is going to be an amalgamation of the present Executive Council and the Management Committee from voting at Congress.

The vote, which was 51 to 19 came though some members of the present Executive Council, did all they could to persuade the delegates to adopt a hybrid system, which would allow Executive Committee members a voting right at Congress instead of a strict adherence of the separation of powers system where the legislative and implementation arms did not mix.

Delegates also agreed not to shrink the size of Congress from the present 105 to 87 members suggested by FIFA as a means of cutting down cost.

FIFA suggested that Regional Football Associations (RFA), who previously sent three voting representatives to Congress, were to bring a representative each, who would rather cast all three votes allocated to each RFA.

The same situation was to be applied to Division One and Premier League Clubs that had more than one representative at Congress. But delegates including Professor Kumado and Kofi Nsiah, GFA Secretary, countered by saying that since the size of congress was not enshrine in the FIFA statues it was not mandatory that the Congress abided by the suggestion.

They said the number should be maintained as congress was not only about voting but provided an important avenue for people to learn about the administration of the game. 26 July 05