A former coach of Asante Kotoko, Abdul Karim Razak, has rubbished the bribery allegations made by the then management of the club as the reason for winning the 2003 Premier League title.
He described it as frivolous and a calculated attempt to tarnish his image as a renowned coach.
Speaking exclusively to the Graphic Sports Online at his Akorem residence in Kumasi, Razak said the allegations were merely meant to discredit him and his players for a well-deserved league title that had eluded Kotoko for almost a decade.
He said the wild allegation was also meant to sway the occupant of the Golden Stool, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II from demanding a comprehensive account from management after Kotoko’s outstanding performance that year.
“After Kotoko won the 2003 league and the Top 4 Cup, Otumfuo invited the management, then headed by Mr Sylvester Asare Owusu to the Manhyia Palace to render accounts of its stewardship and that took management by surprise.
“In their quest to cover up for their failure to render proper accounts, they said they bought matches during the league,” Razak explained, adding that he was as surprised as the players present at the Manhyia Palace.
“What happened in 2003 could have landed Kotoko in serious trouble if it had happened in any jurisdiction but it ended at the palace without any punishment,” he stated.
When asked if he had any hint that management in those days offered money to influence Kotoko’s matches, Razak said, “Before God and man it never happened. I can never lie to you and the nation, and so far as I am concerned, nothing of that sort happened when I took over the coaching job of Kotoko.”
According to Razak, Kotoko boasted a solid squad full of seasoned players whose high work rate drew large crowds to the Baba Yara Stadium.
He mentioned George Owu, Louis Quainoo (goalkeepers), Aziz Ansah, Godfred Yeboah, aka TV3, Daniel Yeboah, Daniel Acquah, Joseph Hendricks, Michael Asante (late), Yusif Chibsah, Edmund Owusu Ansah, Stephen Oduro, Charles Taylor, Michael Osei, Frank Osei, Shilla Alhassan and Nana Arhin Duah as some of the players to buttress his point.