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15.11.2005 Football News

GFA scrutinising match fixing allegations

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Accra, Nov 15, GNA - Kwasi Nyantakeye, Acting Chairman of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) says the Federation is scrutinising the recent match fixing allegations trickling in with forensic lenses. "We are taking the allegations very seriously and we plan dealing with them with the maximum significance they deserve," he told the GNA Sports.

Asante Kotoko and Accra Hearts of Oak have been incriminating each other on alleged match fixing deals in the past few weeks, with both claiming to have evidence to support their positions. Describing the current indictments as worrying, Mr Nyantekyi underscored the GFA's commitment to pursue the issue to its logical conclusion in its quest to arrive at the truth and reprimand the delinquents or endorse the just ended season as a very successful one. " Times are worrying, but it will be needless for anyone to panic. We are very committed to getting to the bottom of the problem, so we can punish the offenders or vindicate the clean nature of the league." Evidences submitted by both teams, according to the GFA capo, have been forwarded to the Disciplinary Committee, (DC) tasked with the prime aim of investigating details of the documents.

The DC is expected to stick to the evidence presented in its search for the truth in the allegations, which have seen both Hearts and Kotoko insisting on credible evidence on fixing their respective games against Heart of Lions and Real Tamale United (RTU) respectively. Whilst Hearts submitted documented data incriminating Kotoko, the league champions have also presented a tape alleged to have the voices of Thomas Okine and Lions' boss, Victor Ahiakpor in which Hearts of Oak were negotiating with Lions to throw their 26th week game played at Kpando.

If need be, the Committee would solicit the support of sound specialist in identifying the people behind those voices, the chairman hinted.

The Federation, he told the GNA Sports was placing utmost emphasis on doing a thorough job. Clubs found guilty, according to the regulations, risk forfeiting some points or may face grave sanctions that include expulsion from the premier league.

This is the first time clubs have come out backing their allegations of match fixing with evidence in the history of the country's soccer, but critics of the FA insist the Association lacks the moral courage to punish the two most glamorous clubs when any of them is eventually found guilty; an assertion Mr. Nyantakye disputes. "Justice will be administered without fear or favour and that is an assurance I want everyone to keep," he concluded.

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