There is a high level of outrage among Ghanaians after the country’s sports minister revealed that the nation spent $4.5 million just for the country’s participation in the 2019 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations competition.
The amount spent is equivalent to the amount Algeria received as prize money for winning the entire tournament in Egypt.
The Black Stars of Ghana exited the completion after losing to Tunisia at the round of 16 dashing the country’s hope of ending its 37 year drought.
Ghana’s Minister for Youth and Sports Isaac Kwame Asiamah has disclosed to parliament “Ghana budgeted US$6.3 million for the Black Stars training camp and AFCON campaign, out of that, $4.5 million was used.”
The minister gave the breakdown of the expenditure as follows:
- Airfare – $924,168.00
- Per diem for players – $187,050.00
- Per diem for Technical staff – $129,600.00
- Per diem for Additional Technical staff – $90,750.00.
- Winning bonus for Players – $965,405.00
- Winning bonus for Technical – $347,027.00
- Winning bonus for Additional Technical Staff – $177,000.00
- Accommodation – $1,143,519.00
- Feeding – $419,300.00
- Match tickets – $41,750.00
- Medicals – $44,574.00
- Visa fees – $8,541.00
- Internal Transportation – $43,092.00
- Incidentals – $42,576.00
The minister in reacting to allegation state resources were wasted in taking supporters who were flown to Egypt on an excursion at the Pyramids disclosed the exercise was organized by CAF and FIFA.
“Mr. Speaker it is not true that Isaac Asiamah led a group for an excursion in Egypt. I mean that’s neither here nor there. Mr. Speaker it was a decision by CAF and FIFA to organize all supporters in all the countries that participated for an excursion so as a minister I was briefed by the FA of Ghana and it was communication I had with the supporters, I had to communicate to the supporters. So that’s all that happened.” He stated.
The breakdown of the budget and expenditure presented by the minister to the lawmakers has however done very little to appease Ghanaians as it throws up more questions.
The Minority in parliament has questioned the figures put out by the Minister before parliament. Member of Parliament for South Tongu and ranking member for committee on Youth Sports and Culture Kobena Mensah Woyome told Africafeeds.com he will personally interrogate the brief from the minister and make his findings public.
“Some calls I have received actually indicated that it’s a massaged figure that actually was presented that’s why I will want to even do further works.”
The appearance of the Youth and Sports Minister Isaac Asiamah before the lawmakers with account of Ghana’s trip to Egypt will not be the last one.
The minister has been summoned to appear before the select committee to provide details on the budget and expenditure for the Black Stars’ outing in Egypt which saw them exit at the round of 16.
Speaking to Africafeeds.com chairman for the committee Alex Agyekum disclosed the minister will be made to appear before his committee after he takes custody of a comprehensive report from the Normalization Committee on Ghana’s AFCON outing.
“I have written a letter to the ministry but you see the statement and the content of the statement from the minister must have time and space.
I don’t want to let the minister to appear before the committee to repeat the same things in the statement.
Remember the paragraph that I quoted was saying that he is waiting for official report from the all stakeholders, we will want to believe that once those reports are received we will liaise and then we get him come appear before us so that whatever he is also telling us will be from a factual point of view. Then we interrogate it.”
Some Ghanaians have expressed outrage at the amount spent on the country’s failed attempt to annex the AFCON trophy for the first time in 37 years.
Many have taken to social media to question why the country spent same amount as the Prize money for the winner Algeria even though the Black Stars crashed out at the 1/16th stage.
The Black Stars budget for Afcon could’ve built like how many school?
— Papi (@JoelOrleans) July 24, 2019
1. In fact when I hear the gargantuan sum that was spent on the #BlackStars participation in the erstwhile #AFCON2019 by the Ministry of Youth and Sports I weep once again for Mother Ghana. I don’t really believe our elected officials feel our plight as a people. I feel ashamed
— Grant Adjorlolo (@IAM_Adjorlolo) July 25, 2019
— #GiveThyselfWholly (@userPkay) July 25, 2019
This country has failed to develop because brilliant & honest people have sat down for idiots & hungry men & women to take up leadership positions right from primary school education to government. #Ghana #BlackStars
— eric darko (@3ric20) July 25, 2019