Sun. May 9th, 2021

GFA fights gov’t in court over moves to dissolve association

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) has challenged the Attorney General’s petition at the High Court seeking for a dissolution of the Association.

In an 83-page response to the petition by the AG, the GFA, through their lawyers, among others challenged the capacity of government to dissolve it.

Last week, the Attorney General filed a petition to have the GFA dissolved following the release of an investigative exposé by journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

The government also secured a 10-day injunction on all activities of the GFA starting June 12, while it pursued other avenues of reforming the association.

However, the GFA’s lawyers argue that the Association, as a company limited by guarantee, was not formed in the interest of the public, but purely in the interest of its members and therefore the AG’s petition based on the “public interest” cannot stand.

Respondent also says in answer to paragraph 7 of the petition that the public’s involvement which may be loosely described as “interest” in the activities carried out by Respondent’s members (football clubs) in their associative relationship with one another in the form of a company limited by guarantee, is narrowly limited to the emotional attachment and the joy that the football activities carried on by Respondent’s members bring to them, but such members of the public have no legal or equitable interest in any of Respondent’s members or Respondent itself for that matter.

The GFA lawyers also argue that the AG’s petition was in response to the video of the then president of the association, Kwesi Nyantakyi, where he allegedly took bribes.

Journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas’ investigative piece, Number 12 caught many Ghanaian FA officials and referees in alleged match-fixing deals.

Kwesi Nyantakyi, who has since resigned as President of the GFA was also caught on tape plotting to fleece the FA of sponsorship money while promising supposed investors access to President Akufo Addo for a fee.

He even went ahead to outline a plan to bribe politicians in strategic positions in a bid to gain control of key projects within the country.

Other top football administrators were also seen taking money to influence call-ups for players into the national team and more playing time.

Scope of injunction

The order of the court bars the GFA and its officials from carrying out all official duties at least for ten days.

This includes the organization of football matches, the selling of the association’s assets, the appointment and election of officials and other official duties.

In her argument before the court, the Attorney General, Gloria Akuffo, contended that GFA was being used for illegal purposes.

The injunction, according to the AG, is, therefore, necessary to protect the public.