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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

FA boss denies endorsing bribery

President of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi has refuted reports that he endorses bribery in the game.

However a news item on a football website on Tuesday attributed to the FA President claimed that he had given referees his express permission to accept bribes in the discharge of the duties. The report also went on to further attack his personality.

Kwesi Nyantakyi says the story as put out has rather misinformed the public because his views were taken out of context though he sought to urge referees to be fair in officiating.

The FA President on Monday made comments about bribery in the game during a ceremony to reward the referees in Accra for their performance.

“I made comments about refereeing and the issues about bribery and corruption associated to it in the game.

“My word to the referees was for them to be fair and use their conscience in handling the matches.

“We cannot hide from the issue that some referees have been compromised and attempts would also be made to influence them. My appeal was and is for them to be fair in their duties and shame such persons who rather tend to taint our game.

“If a referee takes an offer and goes out there to fairly handle a game, I don't think the giver would attempt inducing such a person the next time. The referees have a duty to avoid such encounters which can influence their decisions in their officiating.

“They (referees) would have to be brave and help us (FA) fight this bad practice. Referees need to take the initiative by reporting such moves and not the other way round,” the FA President said.

“For a report which has taken an issue out of context to attack my person, though unfair and not civil is most unfortunate.”

Referees do come up for criticisms with some club officials accusing them of taking bribes from their opponents during matches.

But Nyantakyi says, the FA hears such complaints from club members when appointments of match officials are made.

Though a worrying issue, he admits that the referees can help the Football Association clean the sport.

“We do have complaints coming in from officials when appointments are made. Some clubs protest against certain referees claiming that they have been influenced with monies by their opponents.

“Though they fail to back it with proof, it gives us an idea that the certain dealings might have happened between the complainant and the referee before.

“It's a complex issue but one that we need to confront in order to have level playing field,” he said.

Uplifting the image of the game and eradicating any acts of corruption is a key area in the development of football. Kwesi Nyantakyi says referees must to remain fair and report people who tend to influence their judgments with money.

"The Football Association is committed to ridding the system of any acts of bribery and corruption and we will not do anything to compromise the situation."
Source: Ghana FA - Ghana FA

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