The Ghana Football Association (GFA), Ghana League Club Association (GHALCA) and the Ministry of Youth and Sports have joined forces to totally flush out hooliganism in the local league.
During a call by GHALCA boss, Kudjoe Fianoo to the stakeholders in sport, they came to a consensus that the brilliant season was nearly marred by violence and such situations must be curbed.
On his part, President of the GFA, Kwesi Nyantekyi said the outfit would descend heavily on any club that engages in violence going into the second half of the Ghana Premier League.
“We were enjoying a good season till some violence came in to distract the smooth run of the game across all regions,” he stated.
He added that, the FA would continue to crack the whip on any club or supporters that would engage in any form of hooliganism.
The country he said has come a long way as far as football is concerned and all must play by the rules governing the sport.
According to the Minister of Youth and Sports, Nii Lantey Vanderpuye,the quality of the game has improved marginally, which should have been a signal for a very smooth league but the issue of violence has the ability of affecting attendance and making the league untidy.
He disclosed that the ministry and the Ghana Football Association are working to seek sponsorship for the league but the incidence could affect the negotiations as nobody would be willing to associate with an activity that is prone to violence.
GHALCA he said must work with the FA, the Clubs and Premier League Board (PLB) and security services to educate fans to understand that those actions affect the clubs at the end.
“Example, the Ban on Hearts would affect them as they would struggle to get the number of spectators they were getting at match venues ahead of the ban,” he explained.
“We would collaborate with the security services to deal more aggressively with people who want to destroy our game with violence,” he stated.
He stressed that “we want the police to deal with the people who go to the venue to misbehave to avoid the sanctions that would affect the clubs revenue and attendance”.
GHALCA currently he said has experienced phases that would help in the growth of football in the country.
Mr. Fianoo said as club men, they are also concerned with the emergence of hooliganism in games which does not only affect referees and spectators but club executives.
“Sometimes, club executives are afraid to go to certain venues because of the tendency to be attacked, which is not good for our game,” he stated.
He added that “there is no difference between VIP and popular stand as everyone is treated like common criminal with no distinction.
He admitted that they have a long way to go with the club licensing rules that would ensure sanity of the game.
According to him, the security forces must be neutral in their game as some behave like supporters of clubs and forget their duty to prevent violence during games.
He also urged that nobody must be spared and all the bad nuts must be flushed from the system.
By Michael D. Abayateye