The Executive Committee of the Referees Association of Ghana (RAG) has exonerated 14 referees allegedly implicated in the football corruption expose by investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, in which many Knights of the Whistle and officials of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) were secretly filmed being compromised with money.
On Saturday , September 15, the RAG executive met to act on recommendations of its disciplinary committee which investigated 75 referees accused of bribery, of which 14 were exonerated of all charges for lack of evidence .
However, 61 others received various sanctions ranging between life bans and 10-year bans.
According to a press statement by RAG General Secretary, Joseph Ayita Mensah, the exonerated referees were named as Esther Awo Detse, Prince Coffie, Wiseman Ghansah, Joseph Laryea, Edward Quaye, Solomon Mordey, Joseph Ayambila, Freeman Awulo, Charles Ablor, Eku Boateng, Latif Adaari, Yakubu Nuhu Limann, Alhassan Yahaya and Emurana Salifu.
The referees body however slapped the severest of sanctions -a lifetime ban -on eight of the country’s leading referees namely, David Laryea, Reginald Lathbridge, Safo Adade, Samuel Sukah, Dally Gagba, Fulera Bamie, Charles Dowuona and Umar Teniwere.
The referees handed life bans were found culpable for “seriously breaching various portions of Disciplinary Code, Code of Ethics and Regulations of the football controlling bodies by their actions and inactions”.
As many as 53 match officials were suspended for 10 years for breaching relevant articles of FIFA, CAF, GFA Code of Ethics and Regulations, as well as the RAG Constitution by their actions and inactions.
The affected officials include GFA Executive Committee member, Leanier Addy, who serves as a Match Commissioner and retired FIFA referee Joseph Wellington, a member of the FA’s Referees Appointment Committee and also a FIFA/CAF instructor.
The affected referees include S.A. Quaye, Daniel Dogbetor, Eric Nantierre, Cecil Fleischer, Dawood Ouedraogo, Salifu Malik, Theresa Akongyam, Prosper Adii and Issaka Ayensu Afful. Nathan Anafo, Badiu Ibrahim, Mclord Arhin, Otis Oppong, Salifu Rahman, Samuel Opoku Boateng, Yaw Ametepey, Justice Adu Poku, Kennedy Bentil, Nii Kotey Kotei, Philip Darku, Prince Amoah, Richlove Awuah, S.B. Bortey, Samuel Asiedu, Samuel Borquaye, Samuel Kyeremeh, Saviour Amevor and Sylvester Adzoku.
Others are Timothy Obuobisa, Uriah Glah,William Agbovi, Dickson Wellington, Emmanuel Ansah, Eugenia Asigri, Haruna Bawa, Abraham Opoku, Alhassan Badiu and Ebenezer Ofori Addo.
The rest Amofa Sarkodie, Ashitey Armah, Ashong Ibrahim, Atsu Dogbey, Augustine Akugri, Awal Mohammed, Ben Samari, Ben Vormawor, Daniel Diawuo, David Adjin, Hayford Adehe, Jason Nunoo and Joseph Sey.
The RAF statement indicated that the sanctioned referees had the right to appeal against the decision withing 14 working days after official notification.