Ghana Football Association (GFA) President, Kurt Okraku’s re-election campaign is fervently on, hastily under the cover of activities of the association. In Ghana, many leaders do anything to retain power. In frantic, typical political campaign fashion, the Kurt leadership has been launching several football initiatives.
We have therefore seen a litany of last-minute outdooring of football-related programmes; GFA Foundation, GFA School, Women’s Football Strategy, Ghana Football DNA, etc. In principle, I like these initiatives as I read them, but they are all coming late in the cloak of GFA at work yet form a part of Kurt’s campaign strategy.
His spokespersons reject this observation, but that is fine. In governance, incumbent regimes inevitably suffer criticism like this one when elections approach. Whether or not all they have launched were originally in their plans, the late introduction explains why their steps are being seen differently. The timing is close to the GFA election.
A good example is the GFA awards held over the weekend. Four years into the administration this is the first time we have had an awards ceremony to honour performing athletes in a season. Excuses with Covid-19 and others are plausible.
However, having these awards late in the day raises questions. The awards were hurriedly arranged such that media pressure is what forced out the publication of nominations for instance. That is not done, and it must not be the conduct of an association who have supposedly overachieved.
Award programmes must not be done in haste lest they lose relevance. I applaud the team that ensured the awards took place anyway. We must have the awards every season. Under Abra Appiah’s Premier League Board, it was done.
So, in principle, this is not anything new and I do not also see any duplicity with Nutifafah’s Ghana football awards. Let us be clear: The GFA must have its awards programme. That must also not bar anyone or entity from having football awards.
I will not elaborate but a scrutiny of both award events shows that they differ in philosophy, organisation, style, and presentation. We must not disturb the Ghana football awards because the GFA has awoken from sleep to finally have its own. Domestic football enthusiasts like me relish football awards. We want more.