Paul Adom-Otchere, the host of Good Evening Ghana, has blamed Anas Aremeyaw Anas’ ‘Number 12’ undercover investigation for the Black Stars abysmal performance at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON, in Cameroon.
According to him, the former GFA President, Kwesi Nyantakyi, who was implicated in the investigative piece laid a solid foundation for the Black Stars to gain the needed respect in Africa and beyond.
He said, Kwesi Nyantakyi dedicated his life including his professional life to the Ghana Football Association and at the time Ghana reached her first-ever World Cup in 2006, “Ghana’s leadership in football was already out there.”
“I think the reason for the Black Stars performance [at the AFCON] is the way in which we ditched this man [referring to Kwesi Nyantakyi’s photo on his TV touchscreen]. What we did to Kwesi Nyantakyi because of a documentary, how we threw the baby away with the bathwater is what has occasioned this problem,” Adom-Otchere said n the Editorial segment of his show on Tuesday, January 18.
“Kwesi Nyantakyi was the only African FA President who had risen to a height that he is being called on a first name basis; he was a close of Issa Hayatou. He [Hayatou] doesn’t take a decision at CAF without consulting Kwesi Nyantakyi.
“Whatever Number 12 brought, should we have thrown Kwasi Nyantakyi away?” he questioned.
He noted that, Ghanaians have a certain character that pulls people rising down, therefore, people were overly excited when the then GFA President was implicated by Anas’ investigations.
“People were jumping and screaming we’ve caught him, we’ve caught him, we’ve caught him. Tonight, the Black Stars has had their lowest record in the continental showpiece, the AFCON. Tonight is the lowest record of the Black Stars. Forget about not having won the title for 30 years, tonight, is the lowest record of the Black Stars because as a nation, we have to eschew that character of pull him down.
“The fact that you cannot get to his level, it doesn’t mean you should pull him down and people contrast Ghanaians with Nigerians with this conversation all the time…
“Number 12 comes and people are jubilating; we’ve caught him, we’ve caught him, we’ve caught him, and they are happy. People who should be learning from, people who should check out his history and learn what Kwesi Nyantakyi had done…[Kwesi Nyantakyi] was progressing to be Ghana’s jewel in international football…what has happened tonight is what we did with Kwesi Nyantakyi,” Paul Adom-Otchere stressed.
He further indicated that, the hard work of the former GFA President made the Black Star attractive to international coaches who were ready to take up the role of managing the Stars.
“That is because of the leadership Mr Nyantakyi brought to our football; tonight, is the reward. The chickens have come home to roost,” he observed. “When Number 12 came, we didn’t handle it well. The evidence of number 12 could have been handled, people were writing letters to FIFA [asking the football body to] sack Kwesi Nyantakyi…”
The Black Stars of Ghana failed to beat Comoros Islands in their third group C encounter to stand a chance of progressing to the next stage of the AFCON tournament.
They lost by three goals to two, against Comoros, with skipper, Andre Dede Ayew, receiving a red card in the opening half of the game.
With the result, Ghana ended their campaign with a point from three games [a possible nine points]. The nation’s hopes of ending their forty-year AFCON trophy drought has thus been postponed till later.
About Number 12
Anas Aremeyaw Anas’ ‘Number 12’ video documentary exposed bribery and corruption activities on the part of Ghana football officials and referees – a scandal which led to the collapse of the Kwesi Nyantakyi-led GFA administration.
The investigative piece revealed widespread corruption in football in Ghana. Several match referees were caught receiving bribes in order to favour certain teams.
In many instances, match officials and football administrators engaged in match-fixing deals and influenced who was called to feature for the national team or who got to play in a particular match.
In all, 77 Ghanaian referees and 14 Ghana Football Association officials were caught in various acts of corruption. The documentary also showed three individuals who rejected the bribes that were offered. They were GFA Executive Committee members Kweku Eyiah and John Frederick Mensah and Chief Protocol Officer at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Diana Boateng.
Anas Aremeyaw Anas, the undercover journalist main focus in Number 12 was on the President of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi. He indicated that the actions of the leaders of various national football groups had led to the Ghana national football team the Black Stars missing out on a place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The culmination effect of effective management of football activities had led to a deterioration of Ghanaian football.
During the course of interviewing, Nyantakyi hinted that he had considerable power to influence many sectors of the Ghanaian economy. He went further to suggest that he could facilitate business deals and involve the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo whenever he needed to. Such meetings with the president could be achieved if supposed foreign investors would pay some bribe to him, Kwesi Nyantakyi.
Prior to the screening of the documentary, Anas allowed President Nana Akufo-Addo to view part of the documentary that had his name and office mentioned. Subsequent to watching the documentary, the President lodged an official complaint at the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service. This complaint was due to the fact that Kwasi Nyantakyi had mentioned the names of the president, his vice and others as people that had to be bribed in order to secure government contracts. The CID issued an arrest warrant for the arrest of Kwesi Nyantakyi, who was at that time on an official Confederation of African Football duty in Morocco.