Ghana Football Association

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) is the governing body of association football in Ghana and is based in Accra the capital of Ghana.[2][3] Founded in 1957,[2] the Association was dissolved by the Ghanaian Minister of Sport, Isaac Kwame Asiamah, on 7 June 2018, after the discovery of corruption in the association through investigative videos.[4] In October 2019, a new president, Kurt Okraku, was elected as the association reconvened upon the completion of the work of the FIFA Normalization Committee.[5] Mark Addo was later elected vice president in November 2019.[6] Kurt Edwin Simeon-Okraku has been re-elected as President of the Ghana Football Association during their 2023 Elective Congress in Tamale in the Northern region Ghana.[7]

Ghana Football Association
FIFA affiliation1958
CAF affiliation1960[1]
PresidentKurt Okraku
General SecretaryProsper Harrison Addo

History edit

Gold Coast Football Association edit

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) is the successor to the Gold Coast Football Association, which used to be the governing body for football in Ghana and was one of the oldest football associations in Africa, having been founded in 1920. The Ghana Football Association (GFA) was formerly known as the Gold Coast Football Association.[8] The sport of football was introduced in Gold Coast by the European merchants in the late 19th century.[8] As the game became popular, several amateur clubs were formed along the coast.[8] Records indicate that Cape Coast and Accra were the first colonial cities in sub-Saharan Africa to host formal leagues in the Gold Coast. After a weak start in 1915, the league kicked off in 1922 with the Accra Hearts of Oak Sporting Club emerging as winners, taking the coveted Guggisberg shield – named after the progressive British governor of that period and the man who started the Accra Football League, Sir Gordon Guggisberg.[citation needed][9][10][11]

Amateur status edit

Football was brought to the Gold Coast near the end of the 19th century by merchants from Europe, who had by then conquered the coastal areas and built forts and castles to facilitate trade. In their leisure time, the sailors would play football among themselves and with the indigenous people.

The popularity of the game spread quickly along the coast, culminating in the formation of the first football club, Excelsior, in 1903 by Mr. Briton, a Jamaican-born British citizen who was the then Head Teacher of Philip Quaque Government Boys School in Cape Coast. As the popularity of the game grew, other amateur clubs were formed along the coast, including: Accra Hearts of Oak, Accra Standfast, Cape Coast Venomous Vipers, Cape Coast Mysterious Dwarfs, Sekondi Hasaacas, and Sekondi Eleven Wise.

The Gold Coast Amateur Football Association edit

In 1952, the Government of the Gold Coast enacted Ordinance 14, which established the Gold Coast Amateur Sports Council, and granted the Government of the Gold Coast the legal authority to control all amateur Associations, including Football.

As the popularity of the game spread throughout the country, the existing clubs met towards the end of 1930 and elected Richard Maabuo Akwei as their chairman.

Towards the middle of 1950, the clubs, spearheaded by Ohene Djan, accused Akwei of maladministration and questioned his ability to help grow Ghanaian Football. They therefore addressed petitions to the Governor of the Gold Coast, Sir Charles Arden-Clarke, and the Pioneer Sports Organizer, Joseph Ranadurai, on the maladministration of the Amateur Football Association by Akwei. While the petition was being addressed, Ohene Djan led a "Football Revolution" and succeeded in toppling the Akwei Administration in 1957.

The Football Revolution (1957) edit

In 1957, Ohene Djan was elected General Secretary of the Football Association by the clubs and the Ghana Amateur Football Association was officially founded. He strategically affiliated the Association with FIFA in 1958 and the CAF in 1960.[1]

Ohene Djan was instrumental in securing sponsorship for the first Ghanaian FA cup competition from a pharmaceutical firm, Merrs R.R. Harding and Company. In the same year he succeeded in securing the services of an expatriate Coach, George Ainsley, for the National Team. Then in 1959, he succeeded again in organizing the first national league, before Ghana became a republic on 1st July, 1960.

The Winneba Declaration edit

Through the 1993 Winneba Declaration, Ghanaian football was able to shrug off its amateur status. The formation of professional teams allowed clubs to be incorporated under the companies code (Act 179, 1963) as Limited liability companies.[10]

Dissolution edit

Current Ghana Football Association President, Kurt Okraku

The Association was dissolved 'with immediate effect' on 7 June 2018, after undercover journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas revealed the amount of corruption in the association and Ghanaian football in general. Referees and officials of the association were filmed taking bribes.[4][12] The Sports Minister Isaac Kwame Asiamah referred to Kwesi Nyantakyi on Accra-based JoyFM as "former president" because all arms and affiliates of the GFA stood dissolved. Due to that the 2018 Ghanaian Premier League was cancelled while FIFA banned Ghana from any international competition till further notice.[13][14] The GFA was set to reopen in August 2019.[14][15][16][17]

Reconstitution and operations afterward edit

Elections were held in October 2019 and out of the six candidates who contested, Kurt Okraku emerged the winner.[18] In November 2019, the Women's League Committee was put together. The team was made up of Hilary Boateng (chairperson), Rosalind Amoh (Vice chairperson), Nana Aba Anamoah, Cleopatra Nsia, Jerry Dogbatse, Nana Poku Fosu Geabour II and Christian Isaac Mensah.[19] In January 2020, Prosper Harrison Addo was appointed the General Secretary.[20]

It was announced in early January 2020 that the technical crew of all the national teams had been disbanded. This was done with the intention of giving the sport a fresh start and enhancing the performance of the teams.[21][22] Pursuant to the disbanding, Mercy Efua Tagoe-Quarcoo and Charles Kwabla Akonnor were appointed head coaches of the Black Queens and Black Stars respectively. Mercy Tagoe-Quarcoo was assisted by Charles Anokye Frimpong and Charles Akonnor by David Duncan.[23][24] The National Teams Department was added to the outfit of GFA and Mr Alex Asante who is a Deputy General Secretary was appointed as its acting head.[25]

In September 2020, the Court of Arbitration for Sport dismissed an appeal by Wilfred Kwaku Osei Palmer which, amongst others, sought to nullify the Ghana Football Association presidential elections conducted in October 2019.[26]

Partnerships edit

In October 2020 the GFA signed an agreement with Decathlon Ghana, making the latter the official retail partner for Black Stars kits and equipment as well as other merchandising products.[27]

In September 2022, Access Bank Ghana became official banking partner of the GFA in a US$250,000 one-year deal.[28] PUMA is the official kit sponsor of the National Team, MTN is the headline sponsor of the FA cup and StarTimes-official broadcaster.[29]

National Teams edit

The Ghana Football Association is made up of nine (9) national teams.[30] These teams are namely:

GFA Foundation edit

The Foundation’s Projects and Programmes are defined by 5 thematic or focus areas summarized under the CARES acronym: [40]

  • C - Community Development (Health & Education)
  • A - Assistance to Underprivileged People & Groups
  • R - Reduce, Reuse & Recycle
  • E - Educate Fans on Hooliganism, Fair play and Integrity
  • S - Support for welfare of ex-national players and football officials.

The Africa Cup of Nations edit

The Ghana Amateur Football Association was affiliated with CAF in 1960,[1] and in 1963 won the bid to host the 5th Africa Cup of Nations, to coincide with the Meeting of the (OAU) Heads of States and Government in Accra. Ghana won the trophy and went ahead again to successfully defend it in Tunisia in 1965.

After the 1965 triumph, Ghana hosted and won the 13th Africa Cup of Nations in 1978, and four years later, won it again in Tripoli, Libya. The team have won the Africa Cup of Nations four times (in 1963, 1965, 1978, and 1982), making Ghana the second most successful team in the contest's history, along with Cameroon.

Although the team did not qualify for the senior FIFA World Cup until 2006, Ghana has enjoyed tremendous success at the youth level, winning the FIFA World Under-17 title twice and finishing runner-up twice. Ghana has also finished second at the FIFA World Youth Championship twice.

Ghana became the first African country to win a medal in Football at the 1992 Summer Olympics.

In 2009, Ghana became the first African country to win the U-20 FIFA World cup by defeating Brazil.[41]

With regard to women's football, the Ghana Black Queens have participated in two World Cup tournaments and the Olympic Games. They have also been runners-up to the Falcons of Nigeria in the Africa Cup of Nations series.

Ghana last hosted the African Cup of Nations Tournament in January 2008.

Ghana qualified for the African Cup of Nations Tournament in January 2017 after finishing top of Group H in the qualifying stages.[42]

Executive Chairmen/Presidents edit

President Tenure of office
Mr. Ohene Djan 1957–60
Mr. H. P. Nyemitei 1966–67
Nana Fredua Mensah 1967–68
Mr. H. P. Nyemitei 1968–71
Mr. Henry Djaba 1971–72
Maj. Gen. R. E. A. Kotei 1972–73
Col. Brew-Graves 1973–75
Maj. George Lamptey 1975–77
Maj. D. O. Asiamah 1977–79
Mr. I. R. Aboagye 1979
Mr. Samuel Okyere 1979–80
Mr. S. K. Mainoo 1980–82
Mr. Zac Bentum 1982–83
Mr. L. Ackah-Yensu 1983–84
Mr. L. T. K. Caesar 1984
Mr. E. O. Teye 1984–86
Mr. Samuel Okyere 1986–90
Mr. Awuah Nyamekye 1990–92
Mr. Joe Lartey 1992–93
Mr. Samuel Brew-Butler 1993–97
Alhaji M. N. D. Jawula 1997–2001
Mr. Ben Koufie 2001–03
Dr. N. Nyaho-Tamakloe 2004–05
Mr. Kwesi Nyantakyi 2005–2018
Mr. Kurt Okraku 2019–present


Executive Council edit

On Thursday 24th October, 2019, representatives from the Premier League, Division One League, and Women's Football came together at the secretariat of the Ghana Football Association in Accra to elect their respective representatives for the newly formed Executive Council.

Ten football administrators emerged as the chosen members for the 12-person Executive Council. This reconstituted council consists of distinguished representatives, including three from the Division One League, two from the Regional Association, one from Women's Football, and the remaining posts filled by members from the Premier League.

Below is the full list of the Executive Council

Premier League

Division One League


Women Football

Match-fixing allegations edit

An undercover investigation led by The Telegraph and Channel 4 accused Kwesi Nyantakyi and other officials of the Ghana Federation of match-fixing. According to this investigation however, the allegations involved only international friendlies – thus, the matches the Ghana national team played at the 2014 World Cup were not affected by the allegations.[44] Kwesi Nyantakyi denied the match fixing allegations, saying, "the report of the newspaper or the media house is entirely not accurate," and "there is really no cause for alarm as far as I am concerned, because nothing untoward has happened involving me or the Federation".[45]

Tema Youth Transfer fee case edit

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) issued a ruling in favor of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) in a legal dispute involving Tema Youth Football Club over the transfer of winger Joseph Paintsil to Belgian club KRC Genk. Joseph Paintsil joined KRC Genk from Tema Youth in 2018, and a dispute arose regarding the proper application of Article 33(5) C of the GFA statutes, which pertains to the payment of a percentage of training and transfer fees into a football development fund.

The CAS ruling upholds the GFA's position, and as a result, Tema Youth must pay €150,000 to the GFA. They were also required to pay €688,000 to Young Redbull FC (Paintsil's previous Ghanaian club) and €150,000 to the Ghana League Clubs Association (GHALCA).

CAS rejected all claims brought by Tema Youth against Young Red Bull FC and similarly dismissed those targeting the GFA. Tema Youth was also ordered to pay the GFA 4,000 Swiss Francs as a contribution toward legal fees and other expenses related to the arbitration proceedings.

This ruling marks the conclusion of a series of legal proceedings initiated by Tema Youth SC, which began when Young Red Bull filed a claim against Tema Youth concerning their transfer agreement for Joseph Paintsil. The GFA Player Status Committee and Appeals Committee had previously ruled in favor of the GFA in this matter.

As a result of the CAS ruling, Tema Youth SC, currently in Ghana's third-tier league competition, will continue to incur point deductions for each match played until their outstanding debts are settled. Additionally, a transfer ban, both domestically and internationally, will be imposed until full settlement or a mutually agreed-upon resolution is reached.[46]

References edit

  1. ^ a b c CAF and FIFA, 50 years of African football – the DVD, 2009, Ghana Correspondence 18 June 1963. "MEMBERSHIP OF AFRICAN FOOTBALL CONFEDERATION: I refer to your letter No.RC/Vr of 22 March 1963, and inform you that my Association has been a member of the African Football Confederation since December 1960."
  2. ^ a b "Southern Times-The Politics of Soccer How Kwame Nkrumah built a team of winners". Archived from the original on 10 December 2013. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  3. ^ "Ghana Football Association signs 15-million US dollar sponsorship deal with Oil Company – Xinhua |". 5 January 2013. Archived from the original on 26 November 2013. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Breaking News: President Akufo-Addo dissolves GFA". Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 8 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Kurt Okraku is new Ghana FA president". Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  6. ^ "Mark Addo is new Vice President of GFA". Graphic Online. 5 November 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  7. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Kurt Edwin Simeon-Okraku re-elected as GFA President". Retrieved 8 October 2023.
  8. ^ a b c "Ghana Football Association, Biography". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  9. ^ Yeboah, Thomas Freeman (19 December 2013). "On this day: The first ever professional Premier League game was played in Ghana". Ghana Soccernet. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  10. ^ a b "The History and Development of Football in Ghana". Footballghana. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  11. ^ Ghana, Football (19 August 2022). "The History and Development of Football in Ghana". Football Ghana. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  12. ^ "Film shows African football officials taking cash". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  13. ^ "Fifa bans Ghana football head Kwesi Nyantakyi over 'cash gift'". BBC News. 8 June 2018. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  14. ^ a b "Ghana dissolves football association after cash gifts scandal". BBC News. 7 June 2018. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  15. ^ "Ghana Football Association dissolved after bribery allegations". Africanews. 7 June 2018. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  16. ^ "Ghana's football association dissolved after bribery claims – DW – 06/07/2018". Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  17. ^ DUROSOMO, DAMOLA. "Ghana Football Association Dissolved Following Documentary Exposing Widespread Corruption - Okayplayer". Okayafrica. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  18. ^ "GFA Elections: Kurt Okraku elected President – as it happened". Retrieved 4 January 2020.
  19. ^ "Nana Aba Anamoah, Rosalind Amoh gets GFA appointment". Retrieved 4 January 2020.
  20. ^ "GFA appoints Prosper Harrison Addo as General Secretary". Graphic Online. 2 January 2020. Retrieved 4 January 2020.
  21. ^ "Plans underway to restructure national teams – GFA". Retrieved 7 January 2020.
  22. ^ "Ghana has not been competitive – Kurt Okraku explains Kwesi Appiah axing". Retrieved 7 January 2020.
  23. ^ "Mercy Tagoe named as Black Queens coach". Graphic Online. 1 January 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  24. ^ "Black Stars: CK Akonnor named Head Coach of Ghana". Graphic Online. 1 January 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  25. ^ "Alex Asante heads newly established GFA National Teams Department". Ghana Football Association. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  26. ^ "CAS throws out Osei Palmer's appeal against Ghana Football Association |". Retrieved 18 September 2020.
  27. ^ "GFA signs partnership agreement with Decathlon". 23 October 2020. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  28. ^ "Access Bank named Division One League sponsor in $250k deal". BusinessGhana. 14 September 2022.
  29. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Partners". Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  30. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Ghana Football Association". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  31. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Stars". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  32. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Stars 'B'". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  33. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Starlets". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  34. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Queens". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  35. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Meteors". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  36. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Maidens". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  37. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Satellites". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  38. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black Princesses". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  39. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Black-sharks". Retrieved 28 September 2023.
  40. ^ Association, Ghana Football. "Programmes & Projects". Retrieved 29 September 2023.
  41. ^ "Today in History: Ghana beat Brazil with 10 men to win FIFA U-20 World Cup". Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  42. ^ "Afcon 2017: Nations Cup prepares for kick off". BBC Sport. 1 January 2017. Archived from the original on 7 January 2019. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
  43. ^ "GFA Plaque Wrong: Here are the heads of Ghana Football Association since 1950". 28 October 2019. Retrieved 27 December 2022.
  44. ^ "Football match-fixing: Ghana deal casts cloud over World Cup finals in Brazil". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 23 June 2014. Retrieved 22 June 2014.
  45. ^ "Nyantakyi denies agreeing match fixing contract". Ghana Football Federation. Archived from the original on 25 June 2014. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
  46. ^ "Graphic Online".

External links edit