25 January 2011

Ghana: African Football Chiefs Storm Accra For the Latest Fifa Goal Project

Football Association heads from over 20 countries will be in the Ghanaian capital, Accra, for the launch of the latest FIFA Goal Project in Prampram tomorrow.

It is the biggest gathering of African FA presidents since the colourful African Cup of Nations in 2008.

The occasion would also present Ghana's Kwesi Nyantakyi with a golden opportunity to campaign and lobby for potential votes, by showcasing some of his achievements over the past five years, and also outline his football vision for the future.

The Ghana FA boss has been the subject of intense media and public debate in his own country, as to how successful his administration has been on the one hand, as against transparency with finances.

Interestingly, the Ghanaian has won many admirers and found new allies around the world, including the President of the Qatar FA; Mohammed Bin Hamad, Australia's Frank Lowy and the Gambia FA president Kintey Seedy who incidentally, is also the campaign manager for Nyantakyi' CAF bid.

The Gambia FA boss was the first to arrive in Accra ahead of the FIFA launch on Wednesday and he believes there must be more collaborations and sharing of resources among African football associations. "I did not hesitate to join Kwesi and help solicit support from other members for him because clearly, Ghana is a shining example of sustained and consistent progress in football"

Other FA bosses expected for the launch include Kalusha Bwalya of Zambia, Maigari Aminu of Nigeria, Kristen Nematandani of South Africa, Gebremariam Sehalu of Ethiopia and the President of the Confederation of East and Central Africa Football Associations Leodegar Tenga of Tanzania.

The FIFA Goal Project is aimed at bridging the gap between the developed and advanced European countries and the under developed nations in Africa, Asia and South America to bring parity.

In 2003, the GFA and FIFA signed a US$ 400,000 deal for the construction of the Ghanaman Soccer School of Excellence in Prampram under strict FIFA monitoring and periodic reviews of work.

All the national teams with the exception of the Black Stars use the Ghanaman Soccer Centre of Excellence.

The FA complemented the funding for the new project which cost $425,000 and was constructed by Civicom Ghana Ltd, a local company with Pro-Ark Limited acting as Project Consultants

According to the FIFA Goal Development Officer in Charge of West Africa, Sampon Kablan, the GFA through prudent management and commitment to the realisation of targets has enhanced the image of the game as other nations look to the Ghana blueprint.

"Ghana's transparent and consistent applications meets all the conditions to pursue the next phase of infrastructural development, which is the FIFA Goal IV project."

About 35 African countries affiliated to FIFA have benefited from the Fund although some are yet to quality due to the stringent qualification marks set aside by FIFA.

The first phase of the centre at Prampram was built through Goal I Project whiles the money for Goal II Project was invested in the House of Football - the headquarters of the Ghana Football Association in Accra.

The general consensus is that Nyantakyi stands a good chance to take the CAF seat at next month's elections in Khartoum but it would be a tough contest against Alhaji Mousharaf Anjorin, who is president of the Benin Football Association and supposedly close friend of Isa Hayatou; Tata Avlessi the former Togo FA boss and Hima Souley a CAF Match Commissioner.

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