Anas exposé: Special parliamentary committee to investigate GFA

BY: Musah Yahaya Jafaru

Parliament is to constitute a special committee to investigate the alleged corrupt dealings against the President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Mr Kwesi Nyantakyi, and other officials of the association as captured in the investigative documentary produced by Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

The leadership of the House is yet to name the members of the committee from the Majority and Minority sides.

The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Michael Aaron Oquaye, gave the order for the formation of the committee following a request by the Member of Parliament (MP) for Bodi, Mr Sampson Ahi.

Some other MPs supported the call by Mr Ahi for a committee to investigate the matter.

The constitution of the committee has been deferred because the Majority Leader, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu had argued the Speaker should admit a substantive motion before the committee could be formed.

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Even when the Minority Chief Whip, Alhaji Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka stood up to move the motion, the Majority Leader disagreed.

Although he disagreed with the Majority Leader, the constitution of the committee was deferred.

The Number 12

The Anas' expose', which was premiered in Accra on Wednesday June 6, captured Mr Nyantakyi and other GFA officials allegedly receiving sums of money for some favourable outcomes.

The video, which can easily pass as a blockbuster, which the Hollywood would be envious of, attracted hundreds of patrons who cheered, booed, laughed and screamed at the scenes.

The screening of the video had to be paused several times to cool the “tempers” of viewers who were visibly shocked at the ease with which Anas Aremeyaw Anas’s investigative team easily bribed referees, match commissioners, officials of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), the National Sports Authority (NSA) and the Ministry of Youth and Sports with sums as low as GH¢300 to influence the showing of yellow and red cards, the award of penalties and engagement in visa deals.

The money paid to the officials ranged between GH¢300 and GH¢5,000.

Other forms of inducement to referees, match commissioners and officials included goats, sheep, cooking oil and rice.

Public interest

Prof Oquaye said so far as the events captured in the video were issues of national or public interest, Parliament could investigate that matter.

He said Article 109 of the 1992 Constitution provided that Parliament had the power to make laws to regulate professional, trade and business organisations.

"It is to see whether they are working democratically, so if fraud is alleged, then it cannot be democratic. For that matter we are entitled to look into that matter and come to some conclusions one way or the other.

"We are in an era where we all agree to fight corruption, and Parliament should be the authority that is most interested in view of the fact that it is a representative body of the entire people of Ghana.

"Since no body or institution can assume immunity from parliamentary investigation, I ask that we form a special committee to quickly look into the matter from both sides of the House, then we will be able to know what recommendations we should make", he said.