Accra, June 20, GNA - The commencement of the much-awaited 2005 Division One League, which was scheduled to commence at the weekend has been stalled because of indebtedness with the Referees Association of Ghana (RAG) taking the centre stage. The Association boycotted the matches, threatening to stay clear of the competition until the Division One League Board (DOL) settled a whooping 225 million cedis owed them.
Mr Clement Ashong, General Secretary of the Association told the He said RAG tabled their stance during a meeting with the DOL executives a fortnight ago and they remain poised to carry out their intensions to the letter in the face of a supposed lacklustre attitude exhibited by the organizers so far. The General Secretary said "the DOL promised settling the debt on Thursday but failed, forcing us to wait in vain for them all day". The RAG this year negotiated about 350 thousand cedis for each match officials, which represents a 60 percent increment in their previous officiating allowance. The debt according to him accrued from the 2003 and 2004 seasons.
Mr. Ashong said DOL is also yet to reply to the RAG's proposal for the provision of a one-night accommodation for officials as recommended during the meeting. Match officials who handled the DOL matches last season pre-financed their own trips to match centres. Mr Ashong said " we have made it clear to DOL that we are unable to pre-finance our trips as was done previously and we expect them to show good faith by paying us if they require our service this season". He said "we do not see the point in rendering another service to someone who owe us this much and has made very little attempt to redeem it". The Association intends boycotting the seven-week long competition as long as the DOL do not meet their demands. 20 June 05