..refers newspaper claims to Ghana FA
Kwesi Nyantakyi looks to have been cleared by FIFA of any match-fixing allegations following a preliminary investigation as the world governing body has referred the claims of a UK newspaper to the Ghana Football Association to investigate.
The ruling by the Swiss-based body is a massive boost for the President of the Ghana Football Association, who is seeking to launch a legal action against the English newspaper the Daily Telegraph over the report made during the World Cup in Brazil in June.
Nyantakyi, the President of the Ghana Football Association, was accused by the Daily Telegraph of being involved in match-fixing before the World Cup, which sparked international attention on Ghana.
This sparked the investigatory chamber of the FIFA Ethics Committee to wade into the matter to demand evidence from all parties involved in the matter including the Daily Telegraph.
The Daily Telegraph produced an undercover report in June, in which they staged a set-up with the Ghana FA, in which they claim they wanted to expose the football officials as match-fixers.
But the FIFA Ethics Committee, which has in the past dealt with and suspended several football officials following some allegations, has steered clear from declaring Nyantakyi guilty insisting the GFA should investigate the matter.
“The investigatory chamber of the FIFA Ethics Committee has concluded a preliminary investigation in relation to alleged match manipulation involving officials of the Ghana Football Association and a players’ agent licensed by the same association,” a statement from FIFA read on Monday.
“It followed articles published by UK newspaper The Telegraph between 22-24 June 2014 and the airing of the Dispatches programme “How to fix a football match” on Channel Four on 23 June 2014 that made claims of an alleged case of match manipulation linked to the organisation of international friendly matches involving Ghana’s national team.”
FIFA says based on the information it has received from the Daily Telegraph newspaper, the Channel Four television station and the Ghana Football Association, it has decided that the competent body to investigate the matter if the Ghanaian federation.
“The preliminary investigation, conducted in accordance with art. 62 of the FIFA Code of Ethics, included a request for documents and information from the relevant parties,” the FIFA statement said.
“Based on an analysis of the material, which included the limited portion of the footage made available by the relevant media outlets, and pursuant to the relevant rules established by the FIFA Code of Ethics, the investigatory chamber has decided to refer the matter to the Ghana FA.”
FIFA would have dealt with the matter itself if Nyantakyi was to have been found culpable of any wrong doing says it will continue to investigate the matter despite handing over the case for the GFA to investigate it.
“In light of the seriousness of the allegations, the investigatory chamber will continue to monitor the investigations, and any future proceedings conducted by the competent bodies of the Ghana FA, and reserves its right to revisit its position on this matter at any time,” the FIFA statement concluded.
Nyantakyi said the report was a crude and defamatory ‘cut and paste’ job from the Telegraph, cooked and edited to their whims to make the Ghana FA and Ghanaian football generally look bad.
The Ghana football chief is so confident in his innocence that he’s decided to take legal action – and is going to sue the Daily Telegraph for what he deems to have been manipulative malpractice.
FIFA’s Ethics Committee would have banned and fined Nyantakyi if he was found guilty of any wrongdoing following the allegations by the newspaper as the Ghana FA chief works on their associations committee.
Nigeria’s Amos Adamu received a three-year ban and 10,000 Swiss franc (£6,341) fine from Fifa’s ethics committee today after being found guilty of breaching bribery rules following an undercover report by a UK newspaper in November 2010.
His fellow FIFA executive committee member Reynald Temarii was also suspended for a year and fined 5,000 Swiss francs (£3,170) for breaching rules on loyalty and confidentiality following a similar undercover report.