Following the announcement by the leading opposition party – NDC – to pay football players in the domestic top flight league a monthly salary of ₵1,500, many, especially in the ruling government have hit back with claims that it’s not possible.
But the Communication Director of the NDC, Sammy Gyamfi has responded intelligently to critics of the policy, explaining how practical and feasible it is.
Sammy Gyamfi believes football is a breadwinner for many in the country and the attempt of the NDC to pay salaries of Premier League players will not only retain the best in the league but also provide a better source of livelihood for the players.
In a post on his official facebook handle, Sammy Gyamfi alluded that football is the passion of the nation and a powerful tool for economic emancipation.
“Football undoubtedly, is the passion of the nation, and a sport that has put and continues to put food on the tables of many of our country men and women,” he wrote.
“Indeed, Ghana football evokes such deep sense of national pride and also generates economic opportunities for thousands of Ghanaians, that any government worth its sort must support the growth, development and wellbeing of this most cherished sport.
“The NDC recognizes the dire straits that our Sports Associations, particularly the football fraternity and Premier League clubs have endured in the past two years, first as a result of the disruption that was caused by the #12 investigations, and currently due to the debilitating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Ghana football which has been halted since early this year.
“This is why, H.E John Dramani Mahama, the Nation Builder, has among other things, committed himself to establishing a Sports Development Fund to promote sports in Ghana when elected,” he added.
“Page 86, paragraph 7.6.1 (f) of the Peoples’ Manifesto reads;
“We will…..; “use the Sports Development Fund to assist the Sports Associations to provide and improve remuneration and welfare of local sportsmen and women.”
“Under this policy, any Premier League Club in need of financial assistance can among other things, apply for funds to remunerate their players and save their careers, sustain livelihoods and protect such clubs from going down.
“As it has been the case for every other policy proposal contained in the NDC’s Peoples’ Manifesto, we have done the analysis and we know how much this social intervention will cost the nation and how we intend to fund it when elected.
“For instance with regards to the Ghana Premier League which has a total of 18 football clubs, with an average of 22 players each, should government support each team with remuneration of GHS1,500 per player, it will cost the nation an amount of GHS594,000 ((i.e. GHS33,000 × 18 clubs) every month. In four (4) years, it will cost the nation a total amount of GHS28,512,000 (i.e 594,000 × 48 months), equivalent to US$4.8 million dollars,” he further explained.
The charismatic communicator also added how the government could recoup the investment made in the payment of players’ salaries, hinting a percentage of their transfer fees will be put in the Sports Fund.
“Any club which benefits from this intervention will be required to pay a small percentage of the transfer & sign-on fees of any of their players who gets a foreign contract into the revolving Sports Development Fund.
“This we believe will be prudent use of public funds to regenerate and boost an industry that feeds many and continues to be the breeding grounds for burgeoning talents who go on to lift the name of Ghana high on the global stage,” he pointed out.