Black Stars Demanded $ 120,000

Lvs1Former Minister of Youth and Sports (MOYS) Mr. Elvis Afriyie Ankrah has revealed that players of the senior national team the Black Stars demanded $120,000 as appearance fees.

This was contained in the Ghana Football Association (GFA) draft budget that was brought to the Ministry ahead of the World Cup.

According to him when it was brought, he informed them that he could not defend such an amount before Cabinet and instead proposed a $100,000, because for him that was a bit reasonable in the sense that in 2010 the team took $75,000.

“When we went to Cabinet, we were holding scenarios with a chart which had $120,000, $100,000 and $82,500 as proposals; for me I knew $120,000 was absolutely not possible, $100,000 was like the middle ground but I also knew because there was a lot of uproar we needed Cabinet to pick the final decision and when the proposed budget finally got to Cabinet and after deliberations, it settled on $82,500, a 10per cent rise from the 2010 figure.”

Taking his turn at the Justice Senyo Dzamefe-led Commission of Inquiry into the Black Stars performance at the just ended FIFA World Cup in Brazil, the former Minister of Youth and Sports (MOYS), Mr. Ankrah stated that MOYS and the GFA never agreed to pay the players a $100,000 as appearance fees before going to Cabinet and was unsure whether the proposed $100,000 appearance fees put together by the MOYS and the GFA was leaked to the players, which the players used as bait to insist on the upward review of $82,500 proposed by government.

He said a government delegation had a meeting with the players in Montenegro where the players said they were going to take $100,000 but the delegation told them government had settled for $82,500 and then when the team got to Holland, the leadership of the playing body came out to say they were not going to take the amount proposed by government.

The Commission at today’s sitting will quiz the former Minister to further to know what went into government finally paying a $100,000 as appearance.

On the Ministry’s activities ahead of the World Cup, he revealed that Zenith Bank partnered them and gave a Ministry a seed money equivalent of $100,000 hence their opening an account at the bank, named the Ministry of Youth and Sports-Brazil2014 FIFA World Cup with the Chief Director of MOYS Alhaji Abdulai Yakubu and his Chief Account Mr. Propser Kwashie Apasu, deputy director Alhaji Rex Sumani and deputy chief account Madam Yawa Seidu as signatories.

Mr. Ankrah said a total of GHc4,509,635 was realised by the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS) from 41 companies and entities during its sponsorship drive ahead of Ghana’s participation at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

These monies were to help organized supporters to Brazil to cheer the Black Stars during the tournament following a decision by the government not to use state funds to finance the trip by supporters as had been the case in previous tournaments.

A project coordinator in the person of Mr. Fred Darko was appointed to collate the requests and he prepared the memos.

Giving a total breakdown of the Ministry’s draft expenditure of the amount received, which stood at GHc 4,483,282.89p, Mr. Ankrah explained that MOYS purchased specifics number of match tickets for each match the Black Stars played in three categories, the Ghana versus USA match had category 1, 14tickets, category 2, 12 tickets and category 3 had 548 tickets, totalling 563 tickets together with others they bought on the grounds in Brazil.

The Ghana versus Germany match had category 1, 32 tickets, category 2 had 12 tickets and category 3 had 612 tickets, totaling 656 ticket while the Ghana versus Portugal game they bought 630 tickets totalling 1,849 and this brought the total amount spent on tickets to GHc 519,035.10.

Accommodation and feeding took GHc 1, 953, 96.52p, printing and souvenirs took GHc 168, 314.93p, media relations, GHc16,700, advertisement (billboard, television, radio etc) took GHc461,20p, and website and Brazil 2014 application creation amounted to GHc 22,857.

According to him,the pre-departure presidential ball cost GHc 188,665, medicals was GH₵c5,258.37, communication was GHc 1,740, protocol/promotions cost GHc 2,820, and transportation cost GHc140, 269 with Entertainment and Stationary and consumables costing GHc 76, 370 and GHc 14,947 respectively.

He added that the various meetings of the implementation committee ,comprising the various committees cost GHc22, 00 as well as bank charges.

Mr. Ankrah told the Commission that the account at Zenith Bank is yet to be closed because people are still brings in cheques of sponsorship they went to seek for the tournament.

It also came to light that the MOYS collaborated with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts Industry, Trade Ministry and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and denied the earlier impression created by the Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration representative at the Commission’s sitting, last week, that MOYS had little or no collaboration with them as untrue, because they were part of the committees that were formed and they took active part in the whatever occurred.

He revealed that a total of 612 supporters were sent from Ghana to Brazil but a head count revealed 696 supporters at the camp. He stated that this was so because the travel agents the MOYS engaged revealed to him that they had also gotten people who were not part of their list who secretly found their way into the camp.

He revealed that they were torn between throwing them out of the camp without knowing what would happen to them and allowing them to stay on.

The Ministry therefore decided to take care of them in the Ghanaian Camp.

The Commission continues sitting today.

By Raymond Ackumey & Michael D. Abayateye

 

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