Politician and business consultant – Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom is unfavourably disposed to the decision by the Executive Council of the Ghana Football Association [GFA] to cancel the 2019/2020 Premier League season.

According to Dr. Nduom, who owns Elmina Sharks FC [a Premier League team], football administrators are not investors to decide for club owners and as such should not wield the power to cancel the Ghana Premier League without prior consultation with the club owners.

Following a marathon meeting at the GFA secretariat in Accra on Tuesday, June 30, the Executive Council announced the decision to cancel the 2019/2020 Ghanaian Premier League season due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But speaking in an interview with GN Radio UK and Channel 7 TV in London, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom expressed his dissatisfaction with the decision:

“who is this that is cancelling this league and who is this that is considering the financial and the health impact of all of this.

“It is not the club owners and strange enough in Ghana it is not the club owners who are calling for the cancellation and nobody called me as a club owner to ask me what my opinion is.

“We have people they’re calling as football administrators, a football administrator doesn’t have a penny or a pesewa in the game, somebody who is elected by people we have employed to work for us cannot tell me, and shouldn’t be put in a position to tell me what I should and should not do.”

According to Dr. Nduom who was once a Member of Parliament [MP] for the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abirem [K.E.A.A] constituency, government should abstain from controlling private enterprises.

“It should not be government to tell a private enterprise what to do, except what the government is telling everybody else to do.

“It is about time that the people who have invested in football as private enterprises should be the ones calling for the cancellation of football in Ghana, and that a league should be there, that is owned, managed and controlled by those who have invested in football in Ghana.

“This is what happens in the UK. Those administrators are hired, they come and go, but it is the owners who make the decisions.”

He advised that if the football association and club owners don’t move away from considering football as a social enterprise, as a state controlled enterprise, it is not going to progress.

“Owners of the big clubs in the English Premier league get together and they have a strong affiliation to help each other in terms of commercials.”

The English Premier League, a month before the restart of the league, held meetings with the club owners, sponsors, players, managers, government and medical experts to discuss issues before they finally concluded to play the remaining games behind closed doors.

“There’s nothing that stops Ghana from doing that. For financial considerations, it is the owners who should have sat down to decide if we can handle it this way or not, but nobody talked to us. I hear that there was a call among the managers of the teams, but the managers that I have employed and pay cannot go and make decisions for me,”
Dr. Ndoum observed.

Having decided to cancel the season, the Ghanaian football governing body subsequently decided on Asante Kotoko and AshantiGold Sporting Club as Ghana’s representatives for the 2020/2021 African club competitions.

By Vince Owusu-Appiah| London