A Diagnosis of GFA Reforms; A Brighter Future Looms For Ghana’s Football [FEATURE]

The Cape Coast declarations by the Ghana Football Association (GFA) clearly stipulates a roadmap by which Ghana’s football is expected to thrive on, in the next coming years as efforts are made to change the dwindling fortunes of our game.

The woes of Ghana’ football has certainly metamorphosed into a very disturbing phenomenon which has made it unattractive, corrupt and bribery practices engulfing the game, talents exploration halted with the downwards surge of youth football and across all diversities of the sports.

A three-day summit which took place in Cape Coast last week saw various stakeholders in the game converging to dissect issues confronting our game as various legislative reforms were proposed pending the approval by the Congress which is expected to take place in January.

Problem Identification
The three-day summit saw various stakeholders brainstorm various issues affecting the local game as recommendations were made. Below is summary of what transpired at the summit

The Premier League Board (PLB)
The PLB  at the summit emphasized the various structural challenges that confronts them as various recommendations were made to curtail their shortcomings.

The PLB thoroughly interrogated various issues that confront them at the judicial level, security of match officials, clubs not cooperating with broadcast sponsors (StarTimes) for coverage of matches as well as the way manner premier league clubs are managed.

The Referees Association of Ghana in their presentation at the summit also emphasized the need to improve the security standards at match venues as well as the various financial challenges that confronts the association as they unable to execute their mandate effectively.

The Referees Association also entreated the media to be accurate in the reportage as some publications or broadcast clearly contradicts the efforts being made by referees.

Professional Footballers Association of Ghana (PFAG)

The PFAG at the summit enumerated the need to create a player relations department at the GFA which will deal with the welfare of players thus in relation to their contractual dealings, health care and so other issues prevalent issues faced by players.

Youth Football
Representatives of youth football also highlighted the numerous strides and challenges that confronted them.

They highlighted how the introduction of U-15 Championship has helped thrive the growth of the game but also stated the various financial challenges that confronts them as well as checking the true ages of youth players and via FIFA.com Connect registration system.

Women’s Football
Representatives of Women’s football also highlighted how the growth rate of the game has improved massively, with regards the rampant qualification of the various national women’s team to international level.

However, they highlighted the financial challenges that confronts them the game despite the tremendous efforts by the GFA who fully funds their activities.

They also emphasized the need to collaborate with schools to ensure mass participation as well the low interest of Regional FA’s in Women’s football development.

Kwesi Nyantakyi speaks at the summit

Synopsis of Reforms

  • Restructuring of the PLB, thus a team of experts will be engaged to form a new board for the league, which will meet periodically, while directors in charge of marketing and media wand a general manager will manage the day to day affairs of the GPL.
  • Emplace measures to curtail the insurgency of match fixing and bribery acts in our game.
  • Ghana Football Association also proposed that all Premier League clubs must have an U-17 side for the 2018/19 season.
  • The GFA to engage the media who are major are major stakeholders in the football fraternity as the GFA seeks to enhance its communication.
  • Clubs to suffer points deduction for preventing coverage rather than being fined.
  • Massive participation of women in the highest decision making body of the Ghana FA as well as increased support for Women’s football in terms of funding.

Author’s Take
These legislative reforms stipulated by various body’s within the structures of the GFA will certainly improve the standard of the game if strictly conformed and adhered to, as numerous affirmative actions in the past by the stakeholders has not yielded any fruitful outcomes.

As we build a stronger partnerships for a brighter future in Ghana’s football, we just hope this summit will not be another ‘talkshop’ but proactive actions instituted to trigger the successful implementation of these policy to revamp and rejuvenate the fallen standards of Ghana’s football.

Written By: Simon Asare (@simonasare123 on Twitter)