Chairman of the Ghana League Clubs Association of Ghana (GHALCA), Mr Kudjoe Fianoo, has ‘chewed out’ the Ghana Football Association (GFA) for its failure to stem the ‘worrying’ betting scandals in the Ghana football league.
“As it stands now, I can tell you emphatically that we’re playing a rotten league, bedeviled with stories of betting scandals everywhere.
“This is dangerous for our leagues and football in general, and it tells you why we don’t have a headline sponsor for our Premier League today,” Mr Fianoo stormed out in an exclusive interview with the Times Sports yesterday.
The 2022-21 Premier League season was tainted in the most inconceivable manner after lucid video evidence showed the match between Ashantigold SC and Inter Allies was heavily compromised.
Ashantigold won the game 7-0 with Allies’ substitute player banging home two own goals.
The scandalous result, according to the GFA, is still under investigations.
And, the GHALCA capo is disturbingly alarmed, as the current league too is plagued with constant stories of betting indignity that have been left unplumbed.
“Truth is that, we are ruffled by this worrying trend in our league.
“After the Ashantigold v Allies disgraceful game, we met the GFA President Kurt Okraku and some of the Executive Committee (Exco) members and had discussions on hooliganism and betting scandals in the league and were given full assurance that the matter was going to be dealt out with presto. Today, we’re a few games away from the season and yet we cannot see the end of especially, the betting scandal that rocked us last season.”
According to Mr Fianoo, Exco is the highest decision-making body of the GFA, “and if they cannot find a way of properly investigating the issue and coming out with a decision, GHALCA cannot do much because we are only a welfare body, and can only scream and roar.”
He said if GHALCA had its way, it would halt the ongoing league until the betting scandal affair involving Ashantigold and Inter Allies were settled.
The GHALCA chief questioned the whereabouts of the integrity officers at the GFA and particularly the Premier League Board (PLB), expecting them to come out and speak to the issue at stake.
Though the GHALCA boss believes betting scandals may have been done at the blind side of club owners, he said he would not be surprised if some of them are aware of the situation “and could be benefitting from the rot.”
Mr Fianoo said GHALCA was ready to fight the betting cancer, calling on the FA to up its game.
The apparent betting scandals in the Premier League have been a massive bother to all, including some players as well.
Hearts of Oak goalkeeper Richard Attah told the media last season how he missed a lucrative deal due to the betting scandal surrounding the Ghana Premier League (GPL).
“Initially, I didn’t understand but later the club explained that because of the betting and match-fixing issues that happened in the Ghana League, they don’t trust the league, and it was the reason the deal was called off,” he lamented.
BY JOHN VIGAH