The Dzamefe Commission Report set up to investigate issues surrounding the miserable exit of the Black Stars from the 2014 World Cup has failed woefully to answer the main questions for which it was set up, leaving a lot of room for continuous conjecture and suspicion.
A read of the Commission’s Report shows that the Commission failed to answer such key questions like who was ultimately responsible for Ghana’s early exit, how the appearance fees promised to the players overly delayed and who was responsible, who was responsible for the shabby organization of the supporters front to cheer the Black Stars, the arrival of over a 70 Ghanaian football fans in Brazil after Ghana had been eliminated and the over 200 Ghanaian supporters who sought asylum in Brazil and refused to return to Ghana.
However, the Commission’s Report vindicated the long held suspicion that it was set up to white-wash government and do a hatchet job on the GFA as the Commission tried to find fault with the minutest of detail about the GFA’s organization and operation and proceeded to show clear cases of mischief against the GFA, targeted at soiling the FA and its work.
The Dzamefe Commission was set up in August last year after a disappointing turn of events characterised by various off the pitch scandals and controversies.
The first scandal to erupt even before Ghana could kick off its first match was the treatment and organization of Ghanaian football fans who were ferried to support the National Team. This particular scandal kicked off when Government officials boldly confirmed that resources of the state were being used to ferry selected NDC supporters to Brazil.
The scandals surrounding the supporters further escalated when on arrival in Brazil, numerous supporters complained bitterly of the facilities in Brazil and the poor quality of food they had to make do with. Many of these supporters supported their claims with pictures and video clips of their experience.
Matters worsened when the travel arrangements also ended up in the messiest of states with those responsible failing to arrange internal flights for the supporters ferried to Brazil and the supporters ended up watching the matches on television, just like their counterparts in Ghana.
Interestingly however, the Dzamefe Commission failed to make any significant recommendations on these matters and ensure that the public officials responsible are held to account for their actions and inactions which cost the taxpayer millions of Ghana cedis.
The only thing worth noting was the recommendation for Travel Matters, the Company tasked to transport the supporters to refund some monies.
However, the Commission ensured that it virtually left all the Public Officials involved untouched.
Another major reason why the Commission was set up and on which Ghanaians were expecting answers on was the incompetent handling and failed promises regarding the Appearance Fees of the players, which led to a series of events that destabilised the Black Stars Camp and is believed to have contributed significantly to our early exit.
The Commission Report confirmed that the Bank of Ghana released the money for the Appearance Fees and other expenses on 27th May 2014; yet it took a full month – 26th June, 2014, for the money to arrive in Brazil.
However, the Commission fails to answer who was responsible for this unnecessary delay that led to all the issues which eventually underlined our exit from the tournament
Indeed, the three major players in Ghana’s participation in Brazil, Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, Kwasi Nyantakyi and Kwasi Appiah all confirmed when they appeared at the Commission that the single biggest factor that led to Ghana’s early elimination was the delay of the Appearance Fees and the numerous failed promises by government officials.
The then Minister Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah even suggested at the hearings that he suspected sabotage by some people in government on the Appearance Fees and other issues, which eventually destabilised the Black Stars Camp and ensured that Ghana’s participation was characterised by scandals.
It is therefore interesting that the over 300 paged Dzamefe Commission Report fails to identify who was responsible for this delay, whether there was indeed sabotage at play and to suggest appropriate actions against them.
The arrival of over 70 Ghanaian supporters in Brazil after Ghana had been eliminated and the loss to the State from this unwarranted travel was also left untouched by the Commission.
The Commission also failed to identify who sponsored this trip, if that was the case, as it had come up during its hearings that a supposed friend of the Government paid for the trip.
Interestingly, the Commission focused the significant part of its report on the GFA even going outside its terms of reference to prescribe tactical formations for the Black Stars and other National Teams.
Source: Ghanaian Observer
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