The Executive Council of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) on Wednesday met President Akufo Addo at Jubilee House, Accra to introduce the newly elected council to him and further seek critical support for Ghana football. 

It was an important meeting. This was not a meet-and-greet affair but one that saw the President give audience to arguments for government support for football. I laud the GFA for that step and the Presidency for also opening their doors. I have summarised the matters brought before the government into seven points. 

There are some of the issues raised by the GFA that are imperative. The government has no option than to lend immediate support. There are others that the government must ask questions before listening to the GFA. And indeed, there are some the government must respectfully ignore. 

In my next article, I will show with candour, why I back the GFA’s call on the government. I will also indicate why there are some of the issues that the government must reject totally and state my reasons. For now, read what was tabled before government: 

–  That the existing legislative framework for motivating corporate support for football be proactively activated and implemented. An attractive tax waiver law should be passed for companies that invest $2 million in football with that expenditure seen as their corporate social responsibility. 

–  That Government take the strategic decision to invest in Grassroots Football Development. That the Government supports GFD in the [16] regions with a total of $5 million a year. That Government embarks on a One District, One Turf program with the GFA and that, items imported for use by the national teams and GFD are tax exempted. 

–  That national stadia are renovated with a sustainable model for operation with the National Sports Authority liaising with the GFA to ensure a win-win situation in the use of the stadiums and that Government assists the GFA to acquire two buses for the national teams. 

–  The Government spreadheads an initiative to engage all stakeholders (FDA, MOYS, GFA, Beverage Companies) to develop the framework to enable beverage companies invest and sponsor football. That football clubs in alignment with the entertainment industry be levied 3% VAT to enable clubs build their capacities.   

–  That the MOYS support travel budgets for clubs participating in Africa whilst the GFA continues to explore additional forms of support. Government bears costs of accommodation, airline tickets and per diem to clubs in Africa during foreign trips. That government supports clubs in Africa with security and accommodation for referees in their home games. 

–  The GFA, GES and others collaborate to strengthen schools' football, by identifying talented players in schools after which the GFA will place them in the newly established GFA Elite Academy. 

–   A concerted collaborative effort be made by the MOYS and GFA to pay the salaries of the technical teams of all the remaining national teams and Government considers an arrangement that raises sponsorship for all local leagues, either through direct investment or through viable tax vehicles. Note: President Akufo-Addo promised to act on the points raised by the GFA.