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Blackstars Mess In Brazil, Blame The Government   
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Afriyie Ankrah
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In as much as I want to wait till the fate of Ghana is decided in about three hours before making my views known about the mess going on in the Blackstars camp in Brazil, I believe the problem should be blamed mostly on this Mahama Sports Ministry administration.

I wrote many times about the supposed government budget of the $9.6 million to the Blackstars which is causing the problem for the GFA and the country at large because this $9.6 million was not budgeted for Blackstars but it was a money budgeted for the comfort of the fifteen(15) Ministers, deputy Ministers and Ndc party officials who have been tagging along this team from Rotterdam, Netherlands, Miami, USA and then to Brazil. Where is the so called government money to the Blackstars supposed to be $9.6 million? This so.called money is not made available to the GFA for its operations but is being used to sponsor all those government officials in Brazil, the so called celebrities, Ambulley and other hangers on including the over 500 supporters out there.

Do we all remember Afriyie Ankrah telling the nation that the government is going to give this money to the Blackstars and will not ask for the money back despite the fact that FIFA was going to take care of the Blackstars appearance fees that has caused a lot of consternation for the playing body? Why didn't the government pay the money to the team before it left the shores of the country?

The story being banded about by this administration that the team wanted a physical cash is a lie. The Ministry of Sports wanted to deposit this money in a Bank here in Ghana in cedis, more than a month ago and give the Players a card each where they can withdraw the money anywhere they want in that country's currency and the Players refused and I don't blame them.

With the cedi depreciating every day, their $75,000 if it had been deposited into their accounts a month ago in cedis in Ghana would be worth about $70,000 today whilst the GFA will get the FIFA $8 million in about a month and whatever the depreciation the cedi has gone through will be a profit to these clever thieves in the Ministry of Sports and GFA. These Players are not as stupid as the officials think, they have Agents and family members who can tell them the game these officials are playing.

This situation would not have come about if GFA was allowed to operate independently as it is supposed to be. The GFA could have gone to most Banks in Ghana and take $3 million loan to pay the initial $75,000 per player as initially accepted and that would have been enough to take care of the Players and technical staff and all their needs.

The Blackstars has already been given $1.5 million preparation money which is not part of the guaranteed $8 million.

The government could have budgeted just $2 million to take care of its officials it want to accompany the team to Brazil but the government village idiots who thought this is an opportunity to be tourists without paying for it through their own pockets accompanied the team to Netherlands, USA and finally in Brazil. What a waste of government resources.

This mess happened in South Africa and we thought we learned something but it has gone from bad to worse. Akua Densuah, the Sports Minister in 2010 took her Driver, Bodygurad, cook and daughter to South Africa at the expense of taxpayers and declared that Blackstars won $11 million whilst the actual figure was $14 million and Parliament did not even call her to answer the discrepancy in the figures.

Ghanaians are blaming the Players for being greedy and unpatriotic at a time the country is having money problems but the APPEARANCE FEES to the Players is mandated by FIFA who pays this money and the Players deserve this money. They have already earned $8 million and even if you pay each Player $100,000, that will be $2.3 million and still have a balance of $5.7 to the nation, so we should stop blaming the Players for demanding what is theirs and put the blame at the Sports Ministry.
Source: Sarpong, Justice

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